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Biofilm control strategies: Engaging with the public

Verran, J, Jackson, S, Scimone, A, Kelly, P ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1008-4941 and Redfern, J ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0958-683X (2020) Biofilm control strategies: Engaging with the public. Antibiotics, 9 (8). pp. 1-12.

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Abstract

© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. There are few peer-reviewed publications about public engagement with science that are written by microbiologists; those that exist tend to be a narrative of an event rather than a hypothesis-driven investigation. However, it is relatively easy for experienced scientists to use a scientific method in their approach to public engagement. This short communication describes three public engagement activities hosted by the authors, focused on biofilm control: hand hygiene, plaque control and an externally applied antimicrobial coating. In each case, audience engagement was assessed using quantitative and/or qualitative methods. A critical evaluation of the findings enabled the construction of a public engagement ‘tick list’ for future events that would enable a hypothesis-driven approach with more effective communication activities and more robust evaluation.

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