Engagement of scientists with the public and policymakers to promote alternative methods

Main Article Content

Sonja von Aulock
Francois Busquet
Paul Locke
Kathrin Herrmann
Thomas Hartung


Scientists are usually good at teaching, sometimes even to lay audiences. But communicating with journalists, activists, or policymakers can be a different story – hesitancy to make mistakes as well as the temptation to disproportionally promote one’s own case come into play. The multitude of social media and other web-based outlets has diversified and accelerated the communication of science. Real-time reactions, sharing of data, tools and results, increasing invitation of personal opinion, demand for transparency, political correctness, and loss of trust in experts are challenges to researchers in general. The field of alternatives to animal testing is more political and important to lay audiences than many others, so its scientists must be especially aware of these challenges. Public engagement offers the opportunity to form community and create wide support for non-animal research and its implementation. This requires scientists to step out of the ivory tower of higher education and engage with diverse interest groups by outreach activities, interviews, and press releases, etc. by employing tailored communication.

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How to Cite
von Aulock, S., Busquet, F., Locke, P., Herrmann, K. and Hartung, T. (2022) “Engagement of scientists with the public and policymakers to promote alternative methods”, ALTEX - Alternatives to animal experimentation, 39(4), pp. 543–559. doi: 10.14573/altex.2209261.
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