February 4, 2017

Allow us to introduce you to an #actuallivingscientist

Posted by Laura Guertin

Never doubt the power and reach of social media. It takes just one simple hashtag to ignite an international community – this time, it is for a great cause. Scientists are using the hashtag #actuallivingscientist on Twitter to introduce themselves and what they do.


On February 2, 2017, these tweets appeared:


Then, others encouraged tweets to use this hashtag:


Soon, individuals started posting images and a short description of their work. Here are tweets from fellow AGU bloggers:


Some tweets are for research teams or groups of scientists:


Some of the tweets added a touch of humor:


Some tweets added other trending hashtags:


Certainly, scientists have enjoyed and benefited from these tweets:


But are we reaching the objective from the very first tweet? Are more people actually meeting a scientist?


I hope everyone takes the next step and shares this amazing collection of tweets with their friends, neighbors, local K-12 school teachers, etc. Highlight the range of scientific disciplines, locations of research, instrumentation used, etc. Call attention to the diversity of individuals and interdisciplinary fields. Perhaps volunteer to follow up with a classroom through a Skype session, or visit for Earth Day… a virtual introduction to a scientist is great, but imagine the impact if we help kids and adults meet and speak with an #actuallivingscientist ….

A Twitter account is not necessarily to view these tweets. Here is a link to the Twitter Moment for “These are real, living scientists” and a link to search results for the hashtag #actuallivingscientist.