Friday, August 27, 2010

CfP:: Science Communication Without Frontiers -- 11th International Conference on Public Communication of Science & Technology (PCST-2010)

Science Communication Without Frontiers - The 11th International Conference on Public Communication of Science & Technology (PCST-2010)

Dates: 6-10 December 2010

Venue: Pusa Complex, New Delhi, India

Organized by
International Network on Public Communication of Science & Technology (PCST-Network)
National Council for Science & Technology Communication (NCSTC/ DST)
and others

Public Communication of Science & Technology (PCST) is important for the economic and social wellbeing of society and for the exercise of participatory democracy. It implies the ability to respond to technical issues and problems that pervade our daily lives. It does not mean detailed knowledge of scientific principles, phenomena or technologies, but rather an appreciation of the way science works and how the community can interact with science to help shape its work. New technologies and new media can trigger and sustain public interest in S&T, allowing a dialogue to developing and preparing the people for change.
The 11th PCST Conference will deliberate on both practical and theoretical aspects of science communication, in a globalised world with major inequalities and development challenges. Science communication practitioners and analysts from all continents will compare experiences and perspectives on science-based issues of today and tomorrow.
India, one of the most emerging economies, is uniquely positioned to host a discussion on the role of science in modern society. Poised between modern and developing nations, India represents the future: a world where everything is under challenge including the old frontiers.

The aim of 11th PCST-2010 is to consider new ways of thinking about science communication, and new ways of putting the best ideas into practice, models, tools, policy matters and social factors involved in public communication of science and technology. In the footsteps of previous conferences in Malmo/Copenhagen (2008), Seoul (2006), Barcelona (2004), Cape Town (2002) and before, the Conference will provide an opportunity for the presentation and open discussion of all kinds of ideas, experiences and works related to science communication, popularisation and literacy.

Focal Theme and Sub Themes: The focal theme of the conference is 'Science Communication Without Frontiers'. Five Scientific Sessions with the following Sub Themes will be organized:
  1. A Critical Review of Science Communication in the World
  2. Science Communication Studies & Research
  3. Role of Science Centres & Science Museums
  4. Science Communication through Mass Media
  5. Globalizing & Localizing Science Communication
Call for Proposals
The PCST Network, founded in 1989, aims at promoting public communication of science and technology, encouraging discussion on PCST related issues, and linking practices and theories in varied cultures and countries. The proposals for the 11th PCST 2010 Conference are welcome from individuals, or from groups who wish to propose a joint session. They may cover any of the following aspects of science communication:
  • Public engagement strategies; Media representations; New media challenges and opportunities; Theories and models of science communication; Evaluation of public engagement initiatives; Public literacy and understanding; and Informal learning.
Proposals may be put forward for several forms of presentation, such as a paper that outlines research results, offers substantive theoretical reflection or proposes or evaluates practical initiatives. It may also be a proposal for a seminar on research or theory with details of participants and the topics; a workshop that explores and demonstrates practical techniques; an argument that could be included in a round-table debate; a poster that graphically summarises work-in-progress. Members of the PCST Scientific Committee will review the submitted proposals. Special consideration will be given to proposals that link theory and practice, incorporate different disciplines, explore cross-cultural dimensions of science communication and encourage discussions. The proposal template can be downloaded from the website.

Travel Fellowship
There is some provision of travel fellowships for Indian delegates. International delegates will make their own travel arrangements, except specially invited speakers. The organizers may consider providing local hospitality, i.e. stay, meals, local transport, etc., for some selected foreign delegates. Information on travel fellowships for the delegates from developing countries will be available latter on the website in case there is a possibility.

Time Line
  • Last date for Submission of Proposals (500 words) - August 31, 2010
  • Last Date for Application for Travel Fellowship - August 31, 2010
  • Intimation of acceptance of Abstracts - September 30, 2010
  • Last Date for Submission of Full Paper - October 31, 2010

Just Published -- ICTs and Urban Microenterprises: Identifying and Maximizing Opportunities for Economic Development

ICTs and Urban Microenterprises: Identifying and Maximizing Opportunities for Economic Development - Final Report

P. Vigneswara Ilavarasan and Mark R. Levy

July 2010, IDRC Canada

This publication reports on a research project financed by Canada's International Development Research Centre (

Executive Summary
The research reported here was guided by three questions: (1) What are the current and potential patterns of mobile phone, landline, PC, and Internet café use among urban microentrepreneurs? (2) Are mobile phones, PCs, and Internet cafés related to the stability or growth of urban microenterprises? (3) Can we identify those urban microentrepreneurs and/or microenterprises for which ICT use is associated with economic growth? We conducted in-depth interviews in Mumbai City, India, with 329 male owners or managers of microenterprises and 231 female owners of microenterprises from April through June 2009. In addition, data from a convenience sample of 102 men and women was carried out in September and November 2009. We defined microenterprises as businesses that had more than one but fewer than twenty hired workers. We found that:
  • Nearly everyone who owned or managed a microenterprise—regardless of sex—had a mobile phone.
  • Many female and male microentrepreneurs who owned or managed microenterprises and who used a mobile for business communication reported that the year-over-year income of their business had risen.
  • Urban microentrepreneurs experience different levels of economic growth depending on how they use their mobiles for business communication.
  • The positive impact of mobile phones on microenterprises might emerge only after two years of use. Microentrepreneurs who owned a mobile for two years or less saw some growth in business income; those who had begun to use their mobile more than two years earlier experienced even greater income growth.
  • Levels of PC ownership and usage at home and work were low.
  • Few microentrepreneurs frequented Internet cafés for business purposes.
  • Only small numbers used their mobiles for the full range of business-enhancing activities.
  • Consideration of a microentrepreneur’s full repertoire of ICT use showed a positive relationship with microenterprise growth, especially when other factors such as gender and motivation were also taken into account.
  • Compared to women-owned microenterprises, microenterprises owned or managed by men had much greater increases in business income, although female owned microenterprises also experience some growth.
  • The more positive a female microentrepreneur felt about her status and power because of her business, the more she was motivated to use ICTs in support of her business.
  • The more that a woman entrepreneur used mobile phones, workplace computers, etc., the more her microenterprise grew, especially businesses in the trade sector of the informal economy.
Download Full Report: PDF

Sunday, August 8, 2010

CSSP Working Paper "Globalisation, Innovation and Social Capital: Changing Nature of Indo-French S&T Cooperation"

CSSP Electronic Working Paper Series on S&T Policy and Innovation Studies
ISSN: 0976-2051

The CSSP Electronic Working Paper Series (EWPS) is intended to explore and debate themes in science, technology and innovation studies. While drawing into active dialogue of leading scholars and practitioners who share similar concerns, this effort will reflect the academic priorities of the CSSP.

Working Paper No. CSSPEWPS 2
Globalisation, Innovation and Social Capital: Changing Nature of Indo-French S&T Cooperation

Pranav N. Desai (Centre for Studies in Science Policy, JNU, India)

April 2010

Abstract: The present paper is an attempt to explore whether the Globalisation process has enhanced the significance of social capital as an explanatory variable of innovation. The focus of present paper is on the international dimensions of innovation policies that are likely to influence not only international investment decisions and competitive strategy but also technological change and development process. An attempt is made to analyze the changing nature of Indo-French S&T cooperation in the wider context of the Globalisation of innovation process and whether any discontinuity is likely to be introduced in the collaboration pattern and international cooperation policy. India and France provide an interesting background for the study of the same as India and France are emerging as major global players.

Working Paper No. CSSPEWPS 1
How Law Makes Technoscience: The Shaping of Expectations, Actors and Accountabilities in Regenerative Medicine in Europe
Alex Faulkner (King's College London, UK)
March 2010
Download Full-text PDF

Monday, August 2, 2010

CfP:: National Bioethics Conference 2010: Governance of Healthcare – Ethics, Equity and Justice

National Bioethics Conference 2010: Governance of Healthcare – Ethics, Equity and Justice

17-20 November 2010

Venue: All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi

Organized by Indian Journal of Medical Ethics (IJME)

In recent decades, the Indian health sector has seen revolutionary changes. With the wave of globalisation that has hit the country, world class technologies, super-specialities and big corporate and private sector hospitals have emerged. However, these are distanced from the country’s poor and needy. Globalisation has also paved the way for international collaborations in the field of research, service delivery and health education. Although significant achievements have been made, there are gaping holes and discrepancies in the public healthcare setup which caters to a significant proportion of the population. Keeping these facts in mind, the third NBC, on the theme Governance of healthcare: ethics, equity and justice, is being held at the AIIMS, New Delhi, the premier medical institute in the country.

NBC 3 aims to bring together diverse perspectives on governance in healthcare, towards building an equitable and just health system. It will provide a platform for achieving a productive dialogue between practitioners, administrators, policy-makers and activists towards this end.

Specific objectives:

  • To bring together key institutions within the healthcare sector to engage with the issue of governance with a view to ensuring equity and justice for all.
  • To enable emerging research in bioethics in India to be presented in a public forum and encouraging this research to be published in national and international journals so that it reaches a wider audience.
  • To create a forum for organising skill-building and resource sharing in bioethics among different organisations and to enable dialogue between key stakeholders from India and abroad on a range of issues and from a range of perspectives with a view to enlighten healthcare practice, policy making and management from a bioethics perspective.
Call for Papers and proposals for workshops
The scientific committee of the Third National Bioethics Conference seeks abstracts of papers, and proposals for holding workshops, on topics relevant to bioethics. These must be in line with the conference theme: "Governance of healthcare – ethics, equity and justice."
Some issues which will be discussed in the conference:
  • Universal healthcare
  • Clinical research
  • Stem cell research
  • Indian systems of medicine
  • Community participation
  • Organ transplantation
  • Medical education
  • Medical tourism
  • Healthcare reforms
  • Regulation of healthcare
  • Ethics committees
  • Publication ethics
  • Accreditation of health institutions
  • Public-private partnerships
  • Medical technologies (assisted reproduction, imaging technologies, etc)
Abstract and proposal deadline: August 15, 2010

Sunday, August 1, 2010

From University Research to Economic and Social Benefit -- a Lecture by Sir William Wakeham

IISc-UK Lecture Series

Lecture by
Professor Sir William Wakeham

"From University Research to Economic and Social Benefit"

Abstract: World-class research conducted in manner that explores entirely new problems and encourages a blue skies approach is the start of a pipeline to societal benefit. UK Universities must now take this process beyond the first phase. This lecture series will include examples from Professor Wakeham’s experience of three Universities and will consider: the management processes to be put in place for Academic Staff; IP exploitation; Venture funding; Incubators; Science Parks; Business managers. Examples of processes/systems will be set out, and interesting examples of excellent research that has followed this route will be given.

Short Biography: Professor Sir William Wakeham retired as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Southampton in September 2009 after 8 years in that position. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and its International Secretary, a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, the Institution of Engineering and Technology, and the Institute of Physics. He is a Council Member of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and Chair of Its Audit Committee. He was knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2009 for services to Chemical Engineering and Higher Education.

13 August 2010, 4pm, IIT Delhi

Other Lectures in IISc-UK Lecture Series
  • "Catalysing Innovation: The Role of Universities" by Professor Alison Richard at IISc, Bangalore on 12/01/10 Download Presentation
  • "Adaptation to Climate Change: Policy, Economics and Governance" by Professor Judith Rees at JNU, New Delhi on 22/03/10 Download Presentation

Newsletters of Indian S&T Organizations