The involvement of scientific experts in media coverage and public exposure during the Covid-19 pandemic recalls Goodell’s (1977) concept of “visible experts”. Their presence in public communication leads to new changes in the dynamics between science and society (Maasen and Weingart, 2005; Cheng et al., 2008; Bucchi and Trench, 2014). In time of the Covid-19 pandemic the role of expertise and of the scientist becomes more and more crucial in the academic debate (Algan et al., 2021), therefore with the symbolic launch of VaccineDay in Italy, we have formulated a research question that has become the guiding principle of this research. It is a question of understanding the mechanism that leads specific actors in the scientific community to take on the role of expert and become central in the political and health agenda to effectively promote, through the mass media, interventions both in support of vaccine decisions and in response to cases of misinformation ready to raise social alarm or to stoking seeds of vaccine hesitancy (Colman et al., 2021). In this contribution we intend to explore the centrality on the Italian public sphere of experts by assuming that this is constructed in the interplay between the positional, reputational, and communicative spheres, and therefore does not depend exclusively on communicative and media processes but is nevertheless stimulated by them.

Three main dimensions in the construction of the expert during the Italian Covid-19 vaccination campaign: positional, reputational, and communicational spheres in comparison

Rosanna Cataldo;Gabriella Punziano;Barbara Saracino;Ferdinando Iazzetta;
2022

Abstract

The involvement of scientific experts in media coverage and public exposure during the Covid-19 pandemic recalls Goodell’s (1977) concept of “visible experts”. Their presence in public communication leads to new changes in the dynamics between science and society (Maasen and Weingart, 2005; Cheng et al., 2008; Bucchi and Trench, 2014). In time of the Covid-19 pandemic the role of expertise and of the scientist becomes more and more crucial in the academic debate (Algan et al., 2021), therefore with the symbolic launch of VaccineDay in Italy, we have formulated a research question that has become the guiding principle of this research. It is a question of understanding the mechanism that leads specific actors in the scientific community to take on the role of expert and become central in the political and health agenda to effectively promote, through the mass media, interventions both in support of vaccine decisions and in response to cases of misinformation ready to raise social alarm or to stoking seeds of vaccine hesitancy (Colman et al., 2021). In this contribution we intend to explore the centrality on the Italian public sphere of experts by assuming that this is constructed in the interplay between the positional, reputational, and communicative spheres, and therefore does not depend exclusively on communicative and media processes but is nevertheless stimulated by them.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11588/893031
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