Communicating Research

Reflecting on the readings about research purpose and significance, I found many of the strategies mentioned to be helpful. For one, presenting research as significant to a general audience seems intuitive, but it is somewhat difficult to convince others that what you are doing matters to them, especially in a concise fashion. I am finding that a good way to combat this is to get to the root of the research issue quickly, and then fill in the details about the significance of research including who it impacts, why it can affect everyone, why it matters, and what can be done.

In my research surrounding urban displacement, it is easy to get lost in statistics. Some statistics can be staggering and peak interest, so in my case I like to use them to display the root of the issues at stake. Similarly, describing significance in my research is difficult because much of it is dependent on large systemic and institutional forces at play, so I need to work to make my significance concise. Lastly, the goal of my research is to motivate students to partake in activism efforts which work to center community needs in development. When ending the discussion of my research significance in this way, by answering the question of what can be done, this may leave the audience motivated to take action. 

In terms of my professional goals, it will likely be necessary for me to interact with audiences outside of my field. I hope to go into public health, which is a broad field in and of itself. I hope to concentrate on policy and nonprofit management, potentially focusing on reproductive health and/or community health. In this, I will likely have to work with policy makers, health care administrators, clinicians, and community organizations, among others. In order to communicate my goals across all of these stakeholders, I will need to utilize purpose and significance statements in whatever research/project I undertake in the future.

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