December 1: PhDebates session: the societal value of research

Guest speaker

Date: Tuesday the 1st of December

Jan Kolen


PhD speaker

Time: 15:00 – 17:00

Patrick Valentijn


RMA speaker

Venue: Van Steenis room F102

Koen Berghuijs


Bingo card for talks on science and society

Bingo card for talks on science and society

Academics are frequently asked about the societal value (valorisatie) of their research, by colleagues and friends, but also increasingly by funding agencies.

Few grant proposals today do not include a paragraph on the significance of a project to society. Yet it is not always clear what the immediate relevance of one’s research to the public is.

Moreover, the actualization of this value in the form of public outreach often doesn’t go beyond a museum exhibition and publishing a few popular articles.

Simultaneously, with the increasing involvement of the public in research, academics are questioning where to draw the line; how much of a say should the public have in what research is and isn’t carried out? Should scholars have to justify their research or is scientific curiosity enough?

On the other hand, if public outreach should be considered an integral part of a project, are academics doing enough? Or are we too often merely filling the requirements of our grant proposal?

This PhDebates session asks these questions and more, trying to stimulate a discussion on a topic that is becoming increasingly popular yet increasingly tricky to navigate.

Last Modified: 15-10-2015