Who owns the popular science synthesis

One might assume that the placing of the overview document in the scientific sphere, shielded from the direct influence of policy, would have given it more credibility among the scientists who participated in the assessment. However, it appears that the overview document actually had some problems in this respect, too. Even if the scientists signed a paper ensuring that its content reflected that of the scientific report, remarks from some of the lead authors suggested a lack of ownership over the way in which the assessment results were presented. The issue came to the fore in the highlights document, a condensed version of the overview, which was produced with oversight only by the Assessment Integration Team. It is difficult to tell from the empirical material whether the communication glitches in relation to some of the scientific authors also affected its political credibility but it is an issue that may need further thought in constructing future assessment processes. Again, in the eyes of both policy makers and scientists, boundary organizations may be critical in creating credibility and legitimacy for the synthesis and popular science presentations of assessment results and that this may have little to do with whether everything written has backing in the scientific report. Instead it may more be a question of sense of ownership.

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