Social media as channels for the public communication of science. The case of Spanish research centers and public universities
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De Gruyter House
Scientific communicationDigital pressScience journalismSocial media
López Pérez, L.; Olvera Lobo, M.D. Social media as channels for the public communication of science. The case of Spanish research centers and public universities. Facets of Facebook: Use and Users, 241-264 (2016). [http://hdl.handle.net/10481/43871]
Currently, the Web is valued as a key channel in the informal teaching of science. Despite that, studies on the use of the tools of social media for public communication in science are still scarce. The research put forward here has the objective of studying the analysis of the use made by Spanish research centers and public universities of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to communicate their scientific results to society. Essentially, three aspects have been assessed, presence (if they have registered an institutional profile on the Social media), connectivity (followers on their public profiles) and intensity (this latter element referring to the number of publications registered on their profile during a one-month period in three consecutive years). The methodology used includes the design of an ad hoc checklist which makes it possible to compile and analyze data relating to the three items mentioned above. The analysis was carried out in December of 2012, 2013 and of 2014. From among the principal results, it should be noted that the presence of the analyzed Spanish research centers and public universities by way of channels specializing in the dissemination of science on the three social media is still incipient. Nevertheless, the general tendency is the use of these channels to disseminate their scientific production to the general public. Approximately one-third of the centers analyzed make use of Facebook and Twitter to transmit knowledge specializing in science. And around 16% do the same on YouTube.