In the run-up to a debate session at the 8th World Conference of Science Journalists in Helsinki, Finland, the session organizers have created an online survey to investigate beforehand how many other ‘hats’ science journalists are wearing these days, and how often.
It used to be quite straightforward: journalism and public relations were separate worlds, and both journalists and pr officers would stay in their own spheres. These days, it’s no longer that simple. PR material is copied into press reports, and many science journalists also do freelance work for non-media, including research and research funding organizations, non-profits, private companies and governments. In other words, they are wearing more than just one hat.
On 25 June 2013, the Helsinki conference will feature an animated debate about this trend and its wider implications.
Outcomes of the survey will be presented in Helsinki and, of course, published online.
[Update: Results now available.]