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Results of an Assessment of Planetary Scientists’ Perceptions Related to Outreach

Presentation #111.05 in the session Workforce and the State of Our Profession.

Published onOct 20, 2022
Results of an Assessment of Planetary Scientists’ Perceptions Related to Outreach

In 2021, we collected surveys from 100 planetary scientists about their motivations, beliefs, and experiences with outreach to better understand how to support their work in outreach and public engagement. This was part of a larger survey that included 254 Earth and space scientists from across the United States. Respondents were asked to share their motivations to do outreach as well as their barriers and challenges. Additionally, they were asked to share the types of trainings that would better support doing outreach in the future. Results indicated that over half of the respondents wanted to do more outreach than they were already doing. The main barriers and challenges reported were lack of time to do outreach, lack of incentives to do outreach, lack of knowledge about outreach opportunities, and lack of readily usable materials for outreach. Respondents reported that they would value both in-person and virtual professional development opportunities to support their own professional development. There was significant interest in training about accessibility, learning about ways to engage with different underserved audiences, and learning about practical activities to use in outreach. Personal motivations to do outreach included personal enjoyment, getting people excited about science and engaging them in scientific conversations, giving back to the community, increasing the public’s knowledge and excitement about science, and ensuring that people are informed about scientific issues. We will share nuanced results and recommendations related to planetary science workforce development.

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