A panel discussion involves a group of people discussing a topic in front of an audience. Panels are usually interactive, asking, discussing, debating or responding to questions from audience members. Panels are typically moderated but are less formal than a debate.
Problems and Purpose
Panel discussions usually involve a number of experts speaking on a topic in front of a live audience. The panel format is almost always moderated, allowing for multiple speakers to share their point of view, discuss or debate in a respectful manner, and to interact with audience members. Most panels are discussions rather than debates and they are generally intended to educate the audience rather than 'win' points or adherents. According to Dr. Jean-luc Doumont, "Panels are teams. Whether or not panelists agree on all issues, they can and should work together to create an interesting discussion for the audience."
Origins and Development
Participant Recruitment and Selection
How it Works: Process, Interaction, and Decision-Making
Influence, Outcomes, and Effects
Analysis and Lessons Learned
 "Panel Discussions," in Doumont, J., ed. English Communication for Scientists. Cambridge, MA: NPG Education, 2010. Available at https://www.nature.com/scitable/ebooks/english-communication-for-scientists-14053993/126085065
Lead image: "Panel discussion Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting 2012" Markus Pössel [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons