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Call for Proposals

Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation 2021

+++ Update +++

The conference will not take place physically in Hannover as initially planned, but as a digital conference.


Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation 2021 will take place in Hannover, Germany, 4 – 6 October 2021.

The Call for Proposals was open from 16 February until 26 March 2021.
Proposals for the conference programme can no longer be submitted. You will be informed in May 2021 if your proposal has been selected for the Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation 2021.

Digital Option

Should Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation 2021 have to be carried out digitally due to the coronavirus pandemic, we are happy to cooperate on adjusting proposed contributions to a digital format.

Programme Structure

The conference programme will primarily be compiled from the contributions submitted via the thematically open Call for Proposals.
The programme committee has also set a thematic focus for 2021 titled “Science Communication and Language”.
Selected speakers will be invited for contributions focused on various aspects of this theme, and we also invite proposals relating to the theme. 

Format Keynotes/discussion rounds for opening sessions, Panel discussions Panel discussions Interactive workshops & Project presentations
Theme “Science Communication and Language” Thematically open, Proposals on the thematic focus are welcome Thematically open, Proposals on the thematic focus are welcome
Selection process Speakers will be invited by the programme committee Submission through Call for Proposals Submission through Call for Proposals

Thematic Focus

Science Communication and Language

Science communication takes place in many different forms, forums and formats. As the basic means of communication language always plays a central role, and every context or audience demands a respectively appropriate language style.


Language practice in the day-to-day work of communicators: Dos and don’ts of comprehensible science communication 

Which language style is appropriate at what time? What needs to be considered for target group concious language? What makes a well worded text for press releases, publications or websites? What language is suitable for exhibitions? What should be taken into account regarding language on social media? Which linguistic-ethical standards, guidelines and checklists – and which liberties – exist in science communication?
What about language in science journalism and the media?
Are there examples of failed communication due to problematic use of language, and which lessons can be learned from them?      


Between hate speech and community building: Language in the digital world

How do science communicators deal with the trend towards an increased brutalization of language in the public discourse? How can hate speech, fake news and shitstorms be met on the one hand? And what new possibilities do the various online-channels and their innovative formats hold on the other? How can they contribute to participation, interactivity and the building and strengthening of communities? Which kind of language works on the different channels? Could influencers be(come) the new speaking tubes of science communication?  


Bridging (language)barriers: Fair science communication for a heterogenous and inclusive society

How does science communication deal with allegedly incomprehensive scientific language? Does barrier-free and easy language help reaching audiences that otherwise would not feel or be addressed? How does inclusive language work, and does it get enough attention?
Which developments can be seen in the field of anti-discriminatory language (e.g. gender-neutral and anti-racist language)? How can codetermination be realised in formats such as citizen science? 


Language and its effects

Wording and framing have an influence on how communicated phenomena are perceived. How aware are communicators about this, and what research findings are there regarding this? On an emotional-psychological level, which language influences in what way? How can this be evaluated and what does current research suggest?    


Intersections of science communication, creative forms of language and artistic approaches

How can the use of various less traditional forms of language be successful in science communication? Which intersections do exist? What are examples of scientific topics conveyed through fiction, poetry or children’s books? Which language is used in science slams, science rap or science videos? What about science podcasts? Can science be communicated through theatre, variety or cabaret? Does humour help?
What does the narrative and storytelling-boom mean for science communication?  
How about the visual language of science communication? What can photos, infographics, illustrations, graphic recordings and comics achieve?

Open Topics

You are welcome to assign your proposal to the following subject areas of science communication:

  • Thematic focus “Science Communication and Language”
  • Practice (e.g. practical tips, formats, target groups, best cases/worst cases…)
  • Intersections (e.g. art, politics, economy, international…)
  • Reflections (e.g. values and guidelines, quality, evaluation, impact measurement, science of science communication)
  • Other issues

Proposals regarding the following topics are welcome:

  • Specific challenges and current trends in science communication
  • Strategic issues, projects and cooperation
  • New and innovative formats and locations in science communication
  • Formats and activities reaching interesting, previously unknown target groups
  • Best or worst practice: experience with particularly successful or failed projects
  • New insights, e.g. evaluation or research projects in science communication
  • Future perspectives and project ideas

Proposals providing an international perspective on these areas are welcome and can be submitted and presented in English. 

We particularly welcome proposals from scientists


Please submit your proposal for a panel discussionproject presentation, project presentation “special” or interactive workshop through the Call for Proposals in English or German.

Wissenschaft im Dialog considers equal gender distribution important in both the panels and the moderating teams for interactive workshops. Mixed-gender proposals are particularly appreciated.

Please also consider the following information regarding formats:


  • 75-minute panel discussion with up to three speakers and one moderator
  • Includes at least 45 minutes of discussion with active involvement of the audience, e.g. through the use of voting toolsinteractive surveys or the live use of Twitter
  • The discussion showcases different perspectives including a scientific perspective – ideally by involving a researcher or an artist
  • Speakers from different backgrounds and institutions, potentially with different views on the topic, every member of the panel has a maximum of 10 minutes to give their impulse talk
  • The moderator should not be one of the panel members
  • The moderator should prepare intensively with the speakers before the panel discussion to clearly define key topics and questions for the discussion


  • Short presentation of maximum 7 minutes of a successful or failed project with one speaker
  • Further information is presented on a poster as part of a poster-exhibition
  • Opportunity for questions and further discussion with interested attendees at the poster exhibition
  • Provides an overview of new formats and projects in science communication and the opportunity to exchange ideas


  • Short presentation of maximum 12 minutes of specific study results or evaluations of science communication presented by one speaker 
  • Further information about the study or evaluation can be provided on a poster as part of a poster exhibition
  • Opportunity for further questions and discussions as part of the poster exhibition
  • Provides a glimpse of current research in science communication


  • 90-minute interactive workshop moderated by a maximum of four moderators or speakers
  • Diverse formats such as workshop, world cafédebatefishbowl
  • Participants should work in-depth on an issue and generate potential solutions with a focus on practical relevance and working in groups
  • Please indicate the methods and aims of the workshop
  • Suitable for at least 40 participants
  • If there is sufficient interest you may be asked to run the workshop twice during the conference 

Conditions of participation

Submission of proposals
Proposals for Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation 2021 must be submitted via the online form.

After the proposal has been submitted, an automatic e-mail is sent to the e-mail address entered into the form. This confirms the successful transfer of data to Wissenschaft im Dialog and contains a summary of this information.

You must receive this e-mail to be sure your proposal has been submitted. Should the e-mail fail to arrive, please contact us via: forum@w-i-d.de.

Selection of proposals for the conference programme
The programme committee assesses all submitted proposals and compiles the selected contributions in the conference programme.

If your proposal is selected for the programme of Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation 2021, Wissenschaft im Dialog will notify you of the date and time of your session.

Deadline for submissions: 26 March 2021
Notification of selection: May 2021
Date of the conference: 4 – 6 October 2021
Place of conference: Hannover

Conference fees and registration
Speakers and moderators are eligible for reduced conference fees (covering participation and catering) for the duration of the conference (100€/120€/1 day or 175€/3 days).

We will send you a link that enables reduced registration. Registration must be completed using this link and the online form before the close of registrations. It is not possible to register for the conference after the close of registrations or at the event.

Travel and accommodation costs
Speakers pay for their own travel and accommodation – these costs will not be reimbursed by the organisers, Wissenschaft im Dialog.

Technical equipment and materials
We can provide equipment for your contribution including a laptop, projector, flip chart or pin board. Please bring any further material you need for your contribution such as cards, pens, paper etc.


Privacy and personal data processing

a. Scope of personal data processing

When proposals are submitted to the Call for Proposals for Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation, personal data are recorded and processed by Wissenschaft im Dialog gGmbH. The data are solely processed for the purpose of organising and running the event in accordance with legal requirements and deleted when this purpose is fulfilled. The personal data that are processed and saved, are the same data entered into the online forms for the call for proposals and for conference registration. During the selection of proposals for the programme, names and institutions, as well as the title and description of the session and the submitted links, are shared with the programme committee. The legal basis for the processing of personal data is obtaining permission from the user; as stated in Article 6, Paragraphs 1a and b, GDPR.

b. Purpose of personal data processing

The processing of personal data using the online form is for the sole purpose of managing the submitted proposal and the conference programme. In the case that contact occurs by email rather than via the form, the communication implies permission to process the data. Further information may be collected during the submission of proposals or registration for the purpose of ensuring the safety of IT-systems and preventing misuse of the form.

c. Duration of data storage

The data will be deleted as soon as they have fulfilled the purpose for which they were collected. In this case that includes the procedures required to execute the conference and prepare the conference documentation. If the user wishes to continue to receive regular information about future conferences, their permission is required.

d. Options for refusal and deletion

Any user can revoke their permission for their personal data to be processed at any time. If permission is revoked, it is not possible to participate in the call for proposals.

Important dates

Deadline for submissions including 26 March 2021
Notification of selection May 2021
Forum Wissenschaftskommunikation 2021 4 – 6 October 2021


Here you'll find information about the call for proposals as .pdf ready to download: call for proposals.


Hella Grenzebach
Project Lead
Mail: hella.grenzebach@w-i-d.de
Tel.: +49 30 2062295-45

Lara Kristiansen
Mail: lara.kristiansen@w-i-d.de
Tel.: +49 30 2062295-22

Wissenschaft im Dialog gGmbH
Charlottenstraße 80
10117 Berlin