Baya Laffite Nicolas
Electronic Maps to Assist Public Science (EMAPS)
2011 - 2013 (36 months)
Applicant: Sciences Po Médialab (FNSP)
Other collaborators: University of Amsterdam, DMI; Politecnico di Milano, Density Design; Barcellona Media; The Young Foundation; TU Dortmund University.
Researcher at Sciences Po, I was in co-responsible for the digital mapping of debates on climate change adaptation within UNFCCC using semantic network analysis. EMAPS was a collaborative research project aimed at assessing "the opportunities and risks in the use of the web and the social media as a meaningful information tool and for developing a participatory communication between scientists and the different publics". It focused on the emerging uses of the web as a tool of collective endeavour and public debate in technoscientific issues. It engaged in an 'open-air' experiment using online interactive platforms developed within the project. In the domain of science-society interactions, the aim of EMAPS is to get a better understanding of whether the web can provide a meaningful equipment to produce an enhanced interest of a wider public, not as receivers of information about end results of science, but as potential participants in science in the making. Particularly for controversial topics like climate change, the present EU call underlines the potential as well as the risks of the explosion of online communication and the proliferation of producers and consumers of scientific information. To cope with this situation, EMAPS, coordinated by Prof. Bruno Latour at Sciences Po in Paris, proposed an innovative model to trace the heterogeneous networks constituted around science and technology issues. Accordingly, the involvement of different publics will come from equipping scientists, journalists, activists, corporations and citizens with a political atlas mapping their disagreements on science and technology. This is the hypothesis EMAPS assessed, drawing on a set of theories and practices to be assembled in the project: digital methods, science and technology studies, communication design and social innovation.
Citizen Participation in Science and Technology (CIPAST)
2005 - 2008 (36 months)
Applicant: Cité des sciences et de l'Industrie, Paris, France
Other collaborators: Interface Sciences Société, Université de Lausanne ; The Danish Board of Technology (DBT); The Rathenau Institute (RI); et al...
Research assistant at Cité des Sciences, I assisted the project coordinator during the last 6 months of the project. The CIPAST project brought together organisations having significant experiences in the use of participatory procedures in scientific and technological issues, belonging to the different families of experienced actors in that field (parliamentary offices, research institutes, science shops and science museums, academic researchers), and already structured in European networks (EPTA, IGLO, ECSITE, ISSNET) to set up a training programme tailored to the various contexts in which participation of civil society is relevant. This training programme was designed by processing experience feedback gained from some 40 international organisations with recent practice in participatory initiatives; the target audience for this training programme was decision-makers belonging not only to the political sphere, but also to research sector, non profit organisations and industry; a special effort was made to identify participants in the new member states of the E.U. Re-usable training tools was produced to support the expanding CIPAST network and capitalise the outcomes of the programme. Relying on that transfer of expertise and training activity, CIPAST platform contributed to structure an expanded network of European organisations involved in participatory processes, through dissemination of best practises and circulation of information and documentation, thanks to the management of a discussion list, a website and a European newsletter, and to the organisation of several workshops and a final conference.