Having recently participated in an event at The Open University that explored contemporary scholarship on the topic of public engagement I was left in no doubt that this remains an area of academic enquiry that is yet to be consolidated and transformed into its own academic discipline. Given the attention this area of activity is increasingly receiving, from funders and engaged-practitioners alike, this makes public engagement an exciting area to be working on. Tensions were, for example, evident at this event between those working to knowledge transfer agendas and those seeking to involve people beyond the academy in knowledge generation and disciplinary innovation. This and other such tensions are going to be vital to engage with as part of the Creating Publics project.
Public engagement as academic discipline?