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Gut Siggen in Schleswig-Holstein. Foto:

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The result of the first meeting in 2013 is the ‘Siggen Denkanstoß on the future of science communication’, which as a position paper that seeks to provide impulses for science communication in those areas where science and society meet and, at times, collide.

From the 2014 conference, the Siggen Call for Action was issued, which deals, among other things, with the quality of science communication and provides ‘Guidelines for good science communication’ for discussion.

In 2015, the Siggen Circle dealt with the changing relationship of science to other systems and presented the Siggen Impulse ‘Science communication in times of blurring boundaries.

On the initiative of the Siggen Circle, the 'Guidelines for good science PR' were made public in 2016.

The focus of the Siggen Impulse 2017 ‘Science needs Courage’ is the demand for courageous action to support science and science communication.

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The Siggen Impulse 2017 – Science needs courage (in German)

The Siggen Impulse 2015 – Science communication in times of blurring boundaries

The Siggen Call for Action and Discussion Paper 2014 – Shaping science communication

The Siggen Denkanstoß 2013 – The future of science communication (in German)

Guidelines for good science PR

Checklist for scientists and those responsible for science PR (in German)

Guidelines for good science PR - Presentation and Discussion, April 15, 2016 in Berlin (in German)

Contributors in the preparation of the Guidelines for good science PR (in German)

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A think tank for the development of science communication

The Siggen circle was created on the initiative of the Bundesverbands Hochschulkommunikation and Wissenschaft im Dialog (an initiative of German science and research). In July 2013, the members of the Siggen Circle met for the first time for five days to discuss topics and trends as well as upcoming and necessary changes in science communication. The meeting was part of the programme “a week of time for…”, funded by the ZEIT publishing house and the Alfred Toepfer Foundation without assignment or mandate from these institutions. Since then meetings have been held annually. The Siggen Circle sees itself as a cross-institutional working group. Since its inception, the group’s membership has grown to 68 representatives from science PR, science and science journalism. The members take part in the think tank as individuals and not as representatives of their institutions. The Siggen Circle is not a closed group. In addition to those who have participated in previous meetings, new members join every year through a call for proposals.

Archive 2013 – 2017

The Siggen Impulse 2017

It is time to courageously stand up for the value of science in a democratic society. To achieve this it is necessary to decisively counteract anti-enlightenment forces as well as to strengthen civil resistance forces against misinformation and disinformation ("fake news"). These are the core statements of the ‘Siggen Impulse’, which was created at the conference of the Siggen Circle 2017. From October 16 to October 20 in 2017, twenty experts from science PR, science journalism, as well as scientific research and teaching spent “a week of time for science communication” to discuss the current challenges and possible courses of action in science communication.

The full results of the meeting were published under the title ‘Science Needs Courage’. Markus Weißkopf, Managing Director of Wissenschaft im Dialog, commented on Siggen Impulse on our blog (in German).

Siggen 2016 

On 10–14 May 2016 the members of the Siggen Circle met to consider the future of science communication from an international and particularly a European perspective. German and international participants considered innovative visions for science communication and the most crucial questions about its future as well as new perspectives and trends in Europe and worldwide.

Siggen Impulse 2015

At the meeting in July 2015, the Siggen Circle dealt with the changing relationship of science to other systems. It recognized a progressive blurring of boundaries, which also confronts science communication with new challenges. The loss of boundaries means the displacement and even the disappearance of previously established demarcations between science and other systems (politics, media, citizens) and the removal of restrictions to reach, access and influence.

The task of science communication is to help science deal with these changes. It has to develop new strategies and explanatory or narrative models, as the traditional tools are no longer sufficient in all cases. Its goal is to strengthen science and to shape the dialogue between science and other systems. Science communication also promotes understanding of the nature of science and its inherent standards.

During the meeting, several topics were discussed, including:

  • Science communication and competing thinking models
  • Science communication and politics
  • Science communication and participation
  • Internationalization
  • Science communication and new actors

The full results of the conference were published under the title 'Science Communication in Times of Blurring Boundaries'.

The Siggen Impulse 2015 – Science communication in times of blurring boundaries

Siggen Call for Action 2014

In April of 2014, the Siggen Circle met at the Siggen Estate in Holstein, Germany to discuss topics and trends as well as upcoming and necessary changes in science communication. In order to advance common concerns of science communication, it seemed necessary to have an understanding across the institutions and to bundle the activities – while remaining aware of their different interests, motives and priorities.

15 years after the PUSH memorandum, the Siggen Call made clear that the change in science communication had already begun and named new challenges. Part of the call is a discussion paper defining criteria for good science communication and dealing with the topics of structural change in the system science, quality in science communication and science in society.

The results of the Siggen Circle 2014 were published under the title:

Siggen Call for Action and discussion paper 2014 – Shaping science communication

Siggen Denkanstoß 2013

The Siggen circle was created on the initiative of the Bundesverband Hochschulkommunikation and Wissenschaft im Dialog and sees itself as a think tank for the future of science communication. For the first time in July 2013, the members met for five days at the Siggen Estate in Holstein to discuss the central topics and trends, opportunities and challenges facing science communication today.

Common values were formulated and the position of science communication between science and society was defined. The Siggen Circle has laid down the principles of science communication which will form the basis of a set of rules to be developed together in the longer term.

The results of the first conference in Siggen are summarized in a position paper:

Siggen Denkanstoß 2013 – The future of science communication.