Some science education bits

With the UK Space Agency sending out an announcement that the new European Space Education Resource Office is to open in York, I thought I’d add in yet another blog post on science outreach opportunities.

First off, UCL alerted me to an article on being a science writer and what makes some people turn to writing rather than research. Of course, you can be both, the Space Agency’s own publication, Space:UK, (available for download here) includes contributions from active research scientists, some of who are known as science writers. This kind of person, with an academic background and some proof of public exposure, is also the target of a new talent pitch event aiming to find the factual documentary makers of tomorrow.

Science bloggers and users of new media are to converge in London for the Science Online event on the 3rd/4th of September. Keynote speakers for the event have now been announced. Though I find Evan Harris’ bio on there a little euphemistic – the reason he isn’t a Shadow (or even actual) minister now is the same reason why he’s probably not a strong voice for science ‘within Parliament’…

Another get together of people known to bring science to the public is to happen in a pub in Oxford. The Oxford and Chicago teams behind the Zooniverse group of Citizen Science projects will be meeting at 5pm on the 20th of August at the Far from the Madding Crowd. They will be discussing current and future projects and then just mingling. The next project, presently in development, is to do with star formation. Its final form hasn’t been decided on yet, but suggestions include something like the form of this study, which looks at bubbles seen by Spitzer and tries to align them with star formation regions seen by other probes. Given the recent auroral activity, why not a project looking at turning all sky camera data into proper records of auroral forms. Better than having work experience students occasionally go through the archived data as at present…

And finally, a bit of science writing in action, a podcast from the Guardian on the week’s scientific happenings.


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