I live in New Zealand, where two items on the national news over this last week really caught my attention. The first was a report that a student at a school in Auckland had been punched by another, causing him to fall and hit his head, which required him to be hospitalised. This was just over a week after another student at another school – … Continue reading Gun Control: should Science Communication get Involved?
Women still pray and bargain with God to bear a male child We are in the 21st century when research in health and medical science has reached new heights. Newer technologies are abundant but health care for the rural population in India needs to become simpler and offer practical health solutions. The rural-urban divide poses a major challenge to providing health services. We need low-tech … Continue reading Challenges involved in Communicating Health Science to rural India
Recently, I was a co-author of a paper published in the journal Environmental Communication examining the differences and similarities between science communication and environmental communication. The paper covers many aspects, from the historical development of each field of study to overlaps in scope and differences in focus. However, there was one point that emerged from our review that seemed more salient to me than all … Continue reading Science Communication should wear its Heart more on its Sleeve
William Shakespeare wrote the play As You Like It over 400 years ago. It contains a famous monologue, often referred to as the Seven Ages of Man – although, if Bill were writing it today, it should no doubt be called the Seven Ages of Humans. It begins, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.” The major point that … Continue reading Citizen Science is not all it is cracked up to be
Last night I watched a film called The Factory, which was released on DVD in 2013, fully five years after the completion of filming and following a very limited theatrical release in late 2012. The film fits squarely into the crime-thriller genre and supposedly is “based on actual events.” Without giving too much away, it involves a cop (played by the highly watchable John Cusack) … Continue reading Storytelling: the importance of truth and a good ending
The premiere conference for science communicators is the biennial PCST Conference, which this year was held in Dunedin, New Zealand, from 3 – 6 April. The initials PCST stand for “Public Communication of Science and Technology.” Ironically, however, the public is typically excluded from the PCST Conference events, which are aimed at researchers and practitioners in the field of science communication. This time, we decided … Continue reading The Public Communication of Science and Technology
It takes a lot of confidence to call yourself a writer. I had published several books and won a handful of awards before I dared to put my occupation down as “writer” on any form. It was a seminal moment in my life, one that I remember well: the first time I let myself believe that I actually deserved to be called a writer. And … Continue reading Is Writing Becoming an Irrelevant form of Communication?
For my sins, I am the Chair of the Local Organising Committee for the PCST (Public Communication of Science and Technology) Conference, 2018. This is the largest and most significant international meeting of science communicators and it occurs every two years. From 3 – 6 April, it shall be held in New Zealand for the first time, attracting over 500 of the world’s science communicators … Continue reading Come to Middle Earth for PCST 2018
Today I watched the magnificent Tom Brady lead the Patriots to a win in the American Football Conference Finals over the Jaguars and gain yet another berth in a Super Bowl. It was a remarkable game that the Jaguars could easily have won – probably should have won – were it not for the Tom Factor. Behind throughout, the Patriots went into the final quarter … Continue reading Let’s Communicate Science with Football
The way we communicate or, rather, consume media has changed drastically in just the last few years. Online video on-demand is where things are at. However, even though consumption rates are through the roof, the amount of video available online is daunting. As is often the case for science communicators, it becomes a question of how to reach the target audience and get yourself seen/heard … Continue reading Narrative and Video: untapped possibilities for science communication