Public Engagement Programs

The AAAS Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology provides scientists and scientific institutions with opportunities and resources to have meaningful conversations with the public.

Increasing awareness and understanding of public engagement and its benefits

Research from social scientists, including Anthony Dudo of the University of Texas, help inform AAAS's science communications training curriculum. | Credit: Atlantic Photography Boston

The Center participates in and disseminates research about science communication and public engagement, including:

  • The Communicating Science program works closely with social scientists to inform training curriculum in science communication and public engagement.
  • Center staff present talks on the value of public engagement, and coordinate with colleagues at professional societies and other public engagement practitioners.

Demonstrating excellence in public engagement with science


A child participates in Family Science Days at the 2015 AAAS Annual Meeting in San Jose, Calif. | Credit: Atlantic Photography Boston

In addition to annual events and programs, the Center leads or collaborates with others on special projects:

  • What We Know supports improved climate change communication between scientists, policymakers, and the public. The Center convened a panel of experts to develop and disseminate a report on the realities, risks, and responses to climate change.
  • Building with Biology involves teams of synthetic biology scientists and informal science education (ISE) practitioners co-developing public engagement activities about the science and societal implications of synthetic biology. 

Learn about past and upcoming public engagement events, and public exhibits at the AAAS Art Gallery.

Training scientists to communicate and engage with non-scientific audiences

Photo credit: University of Maryland
AAAS Communicating Science Workshop | Credit: University of Maryland
  • Communicating Science workshops provide communication skills, resources, and practice for scientists and engineers in the U.S. and beyond.
  • Leshner Leadership Institute trains and empowers 15 Public Engagement Fellows each year to be agents of change in their communities and institutions. Each year’s cohort focuses on a science and society issue with opportunities for public engagement.

Building capacity for conducting public engagement with science

Become a Leader- Leshner Leadership Institute

Nominations for the Leshner Leadership Institute are accepted between September and November each year.
  • Communicating Science Seminar at the AAAS Annual Meeting convenes hundreds of scientists, public engagement researchers, and communication practitioners to discuss research and practice in science communication.
  • Watch videos from previous seminars.
  • Graduate Student Communication Training is a group working to connect graduate student communication training programs.
  • Monthly discussion group of public engagement professionals at science societies to share updates and expertise and discuss common challenges.
  • Trellis is a new scientific communication and collaboration platform developed by AAAS. Join discussions with scientists, public engagement professionals, and communication researchers in the Public Engagement with Science Group on Trellis (email us to request an invitation).

Join Trellis

Join discussions with scientists and public engagement professionals on AAAS's new communication platform.

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