- Specialist interests
Dr Eric Jensen's primary interests centre on public engagement with science, with particular emphasis on the ways in which rigorous social scientific methods can be employed to assess the value and impact of science engagement activities. He is Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Warwick, where he teaches quantitative and qualitative research methods, media sociology and co-convenes the new MSc in Science, Media and Public Policy.
Holding a PhD from Cambridge University, Dr Jensen is also Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Zoology, Zoological Society of London / University of Cambridge (http://www.zsl.org/science/ioz-staff-students/jensen,1424,AR.html). His current research projects include a three-year study of conservation education at ZSL London Zoo (funded by the Greater London Authority), a project researching the use of student volunteers within UK festivals that involve universities in public engagement (funded by the National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement) and a mixed methods external evaluation of the Cambridge Science Festival and the Cambridge Festival of Ideas (funded by the University of Cambridge).
As Senior Fellow in Conservation Education and Visitor Research at Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, he is also advising and contributing to the EU-Zoos-XXI project on science engagement activities at European zoos (funded by the European Research Council). Finally, Eric is an advisory board member for the ‘Science for Global Citizenship’ project (funded by the Department for International Development) and contributor to the Informing Science Outreach and Public Engagement (ISOTOPE) project (funded by NESTA and the Open University).
Eric’s recent publications include peer-reviewed journal articles in Public Understanding of Science (‘Mediating subpolitics in US and UK science news’), Culture & Psychology (‘A cyclical model of social change’), New Genetics & Society (‘Celebrity life politics in US and UK journalistic coverage of therapeutic cloning research’), Media, Culture & Society (‘Between credulity and scepticism: Sightings of the fourth estate in 21st century science journalism’) and Psychology & Society (‘Science learning at the zoo’), as well as two chapters on science communication practice and methods in the Oxford University Press volume Investigating Science Communication in the Information Age. He is also co-editing the forthcoming book Culture & Social Change: Transforming Society through the Power of Ideas (Information Age), and contributing two original theoretical chapters (‘Scientific controversies and the struggle for symbolic power’ and ‘Mediating social change: Irony, hybridity and corporate censorship’).
Eric is teaching the undergraduate modules Media Sociology (with Steve Fuller) and Surveys, Secondary Analysis and Social Statistics and the postgraduate module Quantitative Methods in Social Research (both with Richard Lampard).
- Isotope forums
Primarily my involvement in public engagement is as an evaluator / researcher (see http://www.ericjensen.co.uk/ej1/evaluation-consultant and http://www.zsl.org/science/ioz-staff-students/jensen,1424,AR.html). Publications are accessible at: http://warwick.academia.edu/EricJensen
- Isotope interests
In addition to practice-oriented work with organisations including the Zoological Society of London, Cambridge Science Festival, Fitzwilliam Museum and Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, Dr Jensen has published research articles in top journals, including Public Understanding of Science, Culture & Psychology, Media, Culture & Society and Clinical Ethics. Dr Jensen has co-authored two book chapters on research methods and public engagement with science for the volume Investigating science communication in the information age: Implications for public engagement and popular media (Oxford University Press). He has also contributed to the development of the ISOTOPE website for science engagement practitioners.
- Member for
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