Public awareness: What is it? Why do it? How to do it?
Public AwarenessWhat is it? Why do it? How to do it? Presentation by ILRI Public Awareness team ILRI Komms Klinics session ILR Nairobi, 10 July 2012
The Komms Klinics approach• Away from (just) tools, into communication processes• Six broad communication areas• Tools are still part of the picture• Awareness raising and hands-on training sessions• More trainers, more trainees
What is public awareness at ILRI?2. As a serviceINCREASE SUPPORT FOR—AND IMPACTS OF—ILRI-PARTNER WORKRaise intellectual and financial support for livestock research for development, particularly that conducted by ILRI and its strategic partners, and help widen and deepen the positive impacts of ILRI and partner work.2. As a unit at ILRIA 2.5-person unit whose main responsibility is to help the institute and its staff do the above.
What public awareness is not about at ILRI?A central unit that manages/controls relations with the general public to build ILRI’s brand for better sales marketing. Project ILRI Public PA ILRI PA Project Public
What public awareness is about at ILRI? Staff at all levels sharing/engaging with targeted interestedpublics to influence policy, change mindsets, empowercommunities, put research into use, raise funds, changebehaviour . . . .
Examples of public awareness productsPRINTBrochures (project snapshots)Corporate reports (institutional overviews)Posters (message-driven)Exhibits (displays and handouts)News releasesONLINEBlogs for stories (Wordpress)Films/Photofilms (YouTube/Blip.tv)Images and image collections (Flickr)Slide presentations (Slideshare)OTHERSpeeches at eventsMedia interviewsFundraising campaigns
Importance of storyWhat drives effective public awareness at ILRI is storymarried to evidence•Examples---from conversations to single statements and photo captions tosummaries to articles to news releases to opinion pieces to essays tostill images to films.Only humans tell stories.We are wired for story-telling.And for learning through listening to stories.
Importance of qualityWhat makes an organization stand out is:2. the quality of the products it produces--- from its science products to its publications to its communications to its brand4. the closeness of the marriage of what it does and how it communicates what it does.Examples of high-quality products married to high-quality communications• Delia Grace’s report to a donor on zoonoses becomes major media story• African Development Bank concept notes become high-profile VIP donor briefs• Stories from the field become powerful photofilms• Syntheses of research findings become corporate reports
Importance of relevanceWhat gives an organization staying power is its relevance• Xerox PARC research lab lost its innovations to Apple computers• Kodak filed for bankruptcy this yearThe revolution that truly put ‘public’ in ‘public awareness’• 1984 Apple computer and LaserWriter printer.• How that has changed how we ‘go to work’.
New trends in public awareness• Engaging publics and policymakers rather than informing them• Personal learning and knowledge management• ‘Working out loud’ all along the way• Co-creating messages, facilitating discussions CHANGE AHEAD
Examples of effective ILRI public awareness• Blog: Livestock Markets Digest• Book: ILRI Mapping Climate vulnerability and poverty in Africa• Opinion pieces: by Carlos Sere (Globe &Mail, Herald Tribune, New york times, The independent, The Guardian, SciDevNet)• Communications campaign: Like that which was part of the research project from the beginning: IBLI• Pro-poor advocacy: incorporated in research project: SDP
3 things to start doing today to get public attentionTalk among yourselves, to your neighbor, to your team what’s happening, e.g. event, workshop, new paper coming out.Share what you have (slides, photos, scientific posters) using social media. Ask your Comms team to help you get attention for your work. Talk to us. Create with us. Use us.
More about Komms Klinics• Visit our Komms Klinics training wiki: http://ilri-training.wikispaces.com• Find out more and contact: • - Tsehay or Ewen in Addis, • - Angela or Evelyn in Nairobi• Find answers to communication questions: http://ilri-comms.wikispaces.com• Find out about the activities of ILRI’s communication team: http://infoilri.wordpress.com
International Livestock Research Institute Better lives through livestock Animal agriculture to reduce poverty, hunger and environmental degradation in developing countries ILRI www.ilri.org
Reflection: What should be 1-2 priorities for you, your team, ILRI to get our work better known publicly• Think for 3 min about this – put your own priority on a colour card• Discuss this around your table (groups of 4-5) for 10 min maximum• Capture your results on a flipchart sheet• Share your key insights back with us (1. Addis, 2. Nairobi) 10-15 min