BIS is responsible for the Science and Research Budget totalling £4.6 billion per year. Innovation and science staff were keen to know more about activity going on to showcase some of that spending.
What we did
Inspired by BBSRC’s use of scoop.it, an online magazine that lets you post coverage, BIS press office decided to use the same tool to highlight stories. They created a dedicated science, research and innovation page and populated this with stories from the morning cuts, found through searches and Google Alerts, or highlighted by partners.
BIS press office wanted to demonstrate the hard work they put in, alongside media teams from the research councils, universities, businesses and others to generate coverage around public investment in science, research and innovation.
It was important to show that there is a vast range of coverage out there in a wide range of publications, and these often link to BIS and our partners even if not immediately obvious. It was also a chance to give people outside of press office a sense of how science stories are reported in the media.
What worked and what didn't
Scoop.it has acted as a showcase to the department (including senior officials, ministers and the Permanent Secretary) of the wide range and sheer amount of science coverage out there. It has shown that the research councils in particular are doing great work generating features and regional coverage, which may be a more obvious fit for their work as they are rarely making large investment announcements.
Scoop.it will never capture all communications activity in this area. More could be done to demonstrate that there is lots going on in the digital and stakeholder realms on science, and this is equally as important.
Impacts on teams
The feedback we have received has been very positive and some officials have even started highlighting stories they have found to include, which shows more engagement with media outside of press office. The move has also been welcomed by the research councils, who are always keen for chances to highlight their successes to BIS.
Stay up-to-date by signing up for email alerts from this blog.