I read book of prof. Michał Heller. He received award of Hugo Steinhaus for popularizing science. In his speech he mentioned Steinhaus in anecdote. In 1952 Secretary of PAN (Polish Academy of Science) demanded written justification for Steinhaus absence on inaugural meeting. He responded that he "justifies his absence by the fact that the present could not justify their presence" (Google translation). Using this sentence Heller tries to justify his presence in awarded for science popularizing. He claims that science for the development needs proper environment. It cannot develop aside without communicating to external world.
This role I see in Mathoverflow. Not many persons can read mathematical works. Even less can understand them :) Everybody can jump to Mathoverflow and read questions and answers. Have you considered this role of this portal ?