Preprint version. Public Understanding of Science, Volume 18, Issue 3, January 1, 2009, pages 338-353.
Copyright © 2009Sage Publications.
The definitive version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0963662507079760.
While theoretical work and empirical research have examined science policyinforming “dialogue events,” dialogue events that do not seek to inform public policy are under-theorized and under-researched, even though they are common and growing in popularity in the UK. We describe how, from a critical perspective, it may initially appear that such events cannot be justified without returning to the deficit model. But with this paper, we seek to open up a discussion about these non policy-informing events by arguing that there are in fact further ways to understand and frame them. We deliberately draw on different literatures and seek to make use of practitioner expertise within our discussion, in order to display several perspectives on the value of non-policy dialogue on science as sites of symmetrical individual or small-scale learning—rather than institutional learning—through social processes.