The Routledge group publishes some of the conclusions of the CONCISE project

ISABEL HINAREJOS// Coordinated and edited by Carolina Moreno-Castro, Aneta Krzewińska and Małgorzata Dzimińska, the book titled “How citizens view science communication. Pathways to knowledge” collects some data extracted from CONCISE citizen consultations and offers strategies for effective science communication. The book is published under a creative commons license.

One of the objectives of the CONCISE project was to improve knowledge about how European citizens acquire their knowledge related to science and technology, as well as evaluate citizens’ perception of science news. Thus, through five citizen consultations in which 497 Europeans participated, citizens debated four topics of social and scientific relevance: climate change, vaccines, genetically modified organisms and the use of complementary and alternative medicines.

The book “How citizens view science communication. Pathways to knowledge” includes some of the main conclusions of the project throughout its five chapters. In first chapter (“Collecting, analyzing and interpreting the results of the European public consultations on science issues”) the authors describe the methodology followed in CONCISE, through which it has been possible to precisely collect data that has allowed the quantitatively and qualitatively analysis of how citizens acquire scientific knowledge and how this influences their opinions and perceptions.

The second chapter (“What do citizens want? Science communication in the eyes of the public”) presents a qualitative analysis of citizen perception on how to improve science communication. The public consultations carried out within the framework of CONCISE have also made it possible to understand what the priorities are from the point of view of citizens.

Image of the citizen consultation carried out in Valencia

The third chapter (“Citizens’ acceptance of public consultation rules: insights into their evaluations”) analyses whether there are differences between countries – taking into account the cultural differences between countries and the different predisposition to participate in open processes – in the acceptance of the public consultations.

The fourth chapter (“The trustworthiness and reliability of science information channels and sources in the public’s view”) tries to investigate three dimensions of trust: credibility, authority and legitimacy, and presents a model that allows to discern how citizens choose sources and channels of scientific information.

Finally, the fifth chapter (“Perceptions of science information on climate change and GMOs”) addresses citizen perception of two scientific issues that present a fundamental difference: while there is a broad scientific consensus on climate change and it has media presence, genetically modified organisms are still considered an eminently scientific topic. Through the study of citizens’ perception of these issues, the authors explore how science communication can have an impact on point of view and beliefs.


The objective of the CONCISE project, funded by the European Union within the framework of the SwafS (Science with and for Society) call, was to carry out a broad study to generate knowledge about how European citizens acquire scientific knowledge and how this influences their opinions, perceptions and beliefs. Through five citizen consultations in which 497 citizens residing in Italy, Portugal, Slovakia, Poland and Spain participated, the researchers carried out quantitative and qualitative analyses.

The project, which received more than one million euros, was coordinated by the ScienceFlows research group of the University of Valencia and 12 partners from 5 European countries participated: the Spanish Association for Scientific Communication, FyG consultants and the Center for Science Studies, Communication and Society from the Pompeu Fabra University (Spain); the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Lisbon (Portugal); Observe Science in Society (Italy); the University of Trnava (Slovakia); and the University of Łódź and Danmar Computers (Poland). Although European Union funding ended in January 2021, the research team has continued to publish new results and conclusions. All research results are accessible and can be consulted through the project website.