The Handbook on Communicating and Disseminating Behavioral Science assembles for the first time in a single volume research, scholarship and practices from across relevant disciplines and professions to give a coherent picture for both students in the classroom and scholars. Designed as both a text and a handbook, it provides insights into the main actors, contemporary themes and approaches, key challenges, and the broader conditions that influence whether and how the work occurs. Contributors include: behavioral scientists; journalism and communication scholars; mass media reporters, editors and producers from print, television and radio; representatives of think tanks and advocacy organizations; and professional communicators from a university, a scientific society, and a national social issue campaign. All bring an accomplished record of sharing behavioral science to inform policy, mass media, service professions, and the public.Though scholarly, the book brings together leading authorities who are both "doers" and "thinkers" to offer insights into how the work is done and to illuminate the underlying conceptual and empirical issues. The book also advances the dissemination and communication of behavioral research as an area of scientific inquiry in is own right, one that holds vast opportunities for the field of behavioral science. Contributors offer recommendations for programs of research that should be at the top of the research agenda.As a book of core readings written to be accessible to both professionals and students, the book is poised to be a staple of any serious attempt to introduce behavioral scientists to key issues in communicating and disseminating behavioral science and to advance their capacity to understand and conduct the work. It is also an unrivaled resource for student and professional science communicators seeking to learn more about the challenges of communicating behavioral research.
Scientists have long tried, with varied success, to explain the value of their work and to help put their findings to some use. Since the World Wars, and especially since President Johnson promoted his Great Society vision for the nation, behavioral scientists in particular have tried to use science-based innovations (knowledge, interventions, tools, and other technologies) to influence policy, to inform and persuade through mass media, and to improve vital services in society. After some turning away from the behavioral sciences in the 1980s, legislators, government agencies, service providers, advocacy groups, and private foundations increasingly seek to use the research to inform their decisions and practices. They are motivated at least in part by the wish to know whether the ...