How we communicate – guidelines and initiatives
acatech provides independent advice that is in the public interest
Ever since it started receiving institutional funding shared equally between the Federal Government and the Länder in 2008, acatech’s mission has been to provide independent advice to policymakers and the public. In doing so, we observe our Guidelines for Advising Policymakers and the Public. acatech works to promote independent journalism and objective, dialogue-based communication about science and technology. In keeping with this goal, the academy has contributed to the formulation and dissemination of guidelines for good science PR (link to German website). Good science communication requires cooperation between all the relevant parties, and is thus something that acatech seeks to promote both through its own projects and by taking part in joint initiatives.
Our approach to technology communication
acatech is committed to open communication. All the results of its work are published and are available free of charge. The academy also aims to act as a platform for debate in order to promote discussion of new technologies. Ultimately, it is not possible to manufacture acceptance of new technologies – they will only gain acceptance if society is able to have a say in them. acatech analyses technology negotiation processes and experiments with new approaches. The academy also organises dialogues between its own experts, policymakers and civil society organisations.
PUNKT prize for journalism
The PUNKT prize for technology journalism and technology photography is awarded to journalists for well-researched, easy-to-understand, creative and critical work that brings technology to life. In the words of former acatech President Dieter Spath: “It is up to us as a society to shape new technologies. If we are to do this, then now more than ever before we need an open and nuanced debate on technology. acatech’s PUNKT prize recognises well-researched and stimulating technology journalism that supports this debate.”
acatech Communication Group
acatech’s Communication Group brings together communicators from the businesses, associations and research organisations represented in the academy’s Senate. Its members discuss technology communication trends, visit the editors of different publications, advise the academy on communication matters and develop their own initiatives. The Communication Group also provides the prize money for the PUNKT prize for journalism and offers guidance to the jury.
Involvement in joint initiatives
acatech is involved in various joint initiatives of the scientific community to promote science communication and science journalism:
- “Wissenschaft im Dialog” (Science in Dialogue), a joint initiative of the scientific community aimed at promoting discussion and dialogue on research in Germany,
- the Science Media Center, which provides journalists with support for their reporting,
- Futurium, an new location that will soon be opening in Berlin for everyone who wants to help shape the future,
- the Science Years, which seek to promote a dialogue between scientists and the public on a different topic every year.