Articles on Science communication

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Glamorising women in science or incredibly offensive? You decide. http://science-girl-thing.eu

Science, it’s a girl thing! But I’ll keep my adjustable spanner

You’ve really got to wonder when even Hollywoodgossip.com is questioning whether the latest European Union campaign to attract girls towards a science career is a spoof. The video being referred to was…
Advanced computational skills are required for day-to-day work in most areas of modern science. kodomut

How to teach science and computing in the age of big data

Earlier this week, Senator Chris Evans announced A$5 million worth of science communication grants for 63 projects as part of the Unlocking Australia’s Potential program. We were successful in getting…
How best to quantify the performance of Australian researchers? Storyvillegirl

Strength in numbers: do ERA rankings add up for universities?

The Excellence in Research for Australia Initiative (ERA) is the federal government’s latest attempt to quantify the “excellence” (or otherwise) of Australian researchers. And just a few short weeks ago…
The public often thinks science and technology are the cause of their problems, not the solution. Erik Berndt

Ask and you shall receive - smart consultation leads to better science

Worldwide, and especially in Australia, much valuable science is being wasted or stalled through what is known as technology rejection – the public’s hostile reception of new technologies or scientific…
Rhetoric, even when light as a feather, can carry more weight than scientific evidence. Ark in Time

Eat your heart out, scientists: evidence is a balancing act

The Book of the Dead describes the ancient Egyptian “weighing of the heart” ceremony as the placing of a heart on one side of a set of scales and a feather on the other. Goddess Ma'at’s feather represents…
There’s knowing science, then knowing how to teach it. B Rosen

Teaching the nature of science (and keeping students engaged)

Last week’s Health of Australian Science report, by the Chief Scientist of Australia Ian Chubb, has again highlighted the issue of declining student engagement in science in primary and secondary schools…
Julia Lane oversaw the introduction of the STAR METRICS program in the US. vr.se

Push to quantify social impact of science goes global

Australia is preparing to join a worldwide push to map the wider social returns on investments in science. This week Professor…
You want the truth? You can’t handle the … wait: it’s actually quite simple. Daveblog

The truth, the whole truth and … wait, how many truths are there?

Calling something a “scientific truth” is a double-edged sword. On the one hand it carries a kind of epistemic (how we know) credibility, a quality assurance that a truth has been arrived at in an understandable…
Good science policy will help bridge gaps in our relationship with Asia. Kalexanderson

Good science makes good neighbours in Asia

AUSTRALIA IN THE ASIAN CENTURY – A series examining Australia’s role in the rapidly transforming Asian region. Delivered in partnership with the Australian government. Today, Dr Sally Gras considers the…
Making sure what’s intended is what’s heard can be more difficult than it seems. Melvin Gaal (mindsharing.eu)

Listen and learn: the language of science and scepticism

As scientists, one of our responsibilities should be to promote clarity. A lot of problems are caused by an incorrect or incomplete understanding of terms we regularly, and even lovingly, use. When I use…
Scientists and politicians rely on each other – so how best to develop that relationship? mayhem

Scientists and policy-makers: it’s time to bridge the gap

“Our lack of ability to position our argument in the public means science has not influenced public debate as it should.” So said Australian National University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Young at…
Art reflects back the crisis we’ve created. Simon Hennessey: Sunset over Metropolis

Can art change minds where science can’t?

“Artists are shape-shifters and in this there is a perennial, ferocious hope; the hope which transforms, which whispers of possibility, of vision, of change and radical healing. Existing art about climate…
Just because an idea seems ridiculous, doesn’t mean it’s not worth discussing. moirabot/Flickr

Elephants on grass: only lively debate can save Australia’s environment

Last week I published an opinion piece in Nature attempting to crystallise debate on a number of issues in Australian environmental management: bushfires, weeds, feral animals, management of Aboriginal…
If the US Research Works Bill passes, public access to US research will be restricted. Flickr/the Firebottle

A small bill in the US, a giant impact for research worldwide

Over the Christmas period, a short Bill was introduced into the US House of Representatives. The Research Works Act aims to make it illegal to require researchers to make their work publicly available…
You may be home late if the entire universe is your test tube. morgantj

Science can seem like madness, but there’s always method

THE STATE OF SCIENCE: How does science work? And how can we experiment on things that don’t fit in a lab? Dr Will Howard examines the many faces of the scientific method. As adults, our understanding of…

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