Science journalism seminar kicks off in Montenegro


[PODGORICA] A small group of local journalists, PR professionals and scientists gathered today in Podgorica, Montenegro for a seminar on science journalism co-organised by UNESCO’s Venice office.

The seminar was part of a bigger event that kicks off here tomorrow (20 September): the 2nd South East European UNESCO Science Communication Workshop.

The first edition of this workshop was launched last year in Belgrade, Serbia, following networking events at the 12th International Public Communication of Science and Technology Conference in Florence, Italy in 2012 where two sessions focused on science in the Balkan media – and in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina where UNESCO organised a science journalism event in November 2012.

Yesterday’s seminar attracted around a dozen, mainly young, female, participants who listened to talks about how and why to cover science stories in the region, with case studies from Montenegro and Serbia; about understanding risk reporting; and about tackling pseudoscience, with examples from the infamous ‘Stamina’ stem cells example in Italy.

The event has been overshadowed by an investigative journalism report the week before in the local newspaper, Vijesti, which claimed the science minister had plagiarised one of her research papers – with minister not clearly denying the accusations. The science ministry is one of the co-organisers of the event, as well as the Open Science Days Festival that starts after the workshop ends on the 22nd September.

The rest of the workshop is expected to be attended by over 25 journalists from across South-East Europe.

Disclosure: I am one of the co-organisers and a speaker at the workshop.

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