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You are browsing the archive for SciComm Action Archives - The Plainspoken Scientist.

2 December 2019

SciComm, policy, and outreach at AGU19!

♩It’s the most, wonderful tiiiiiiiime, of the year! ♫ 

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20 November 2019

Having “The [Climate Change] Talk” with your family

Thanksgiving can be a time for food, football, and family. And sometimes…uncomfortable family chats, especially around science. We live in a nation where there are disconnects between understanding and acceptance of major scientific issues such as GMOs, evolution, vaccinations, and (especially relevant to AGU scientists) climate change.

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11 November 2019

I had my doubts about Wikipedia…until an Edit-a-thon

I use Wikipedia. I feel like most folks on the internet have made their way to the website for one reason or another. It’s a treasure trove of information. Just the other day I found myself deep diving on 2018 earthquake that hit Alaska as it was the first (and only) one I’ve experienced. There was a lot of really science-y, technical language in the article. And I trusted it.

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9 September 2019

Getting outside the comfort of the journalism classroom to encourage science

Newsrooms are giving more attention to climate change and writing about science, so preparing future journalists to cover difficult topics is essential.

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7 June 2019

Community (and Communication) Don’t Happen Naturally

Six months ago, I had no idea what a community manager was.

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27 May 2019

Revealing the baseline of geoscience outreach

Geoscience has been one of the least diverse STEM fields for nearly four decades, perhaps in part because our science isn’t making it to those who are outside our departments and institutions. In the era of climate change skepticism, geoscientists who practice science communication could provide immense value to their local and global communities by serving as Earth experts who can empower non-scientists to engage in reasoning and analysis in all aspects of life.

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9 May 2019

Earth’s Past in Poetry

How do we regard the vast planetary time scales that span the Earth Sciences?  How do we regard a figure showing changes in Earth’s temperature since the age of dinosaurs, as spring rains pelt against the window, making rivulets that will evaporate before we leave the office, before we finish that email, and check our analysis, and pay that bill, and tweet that article, and lead that meeting, and, and, and…all in the next three hours. The Paleocene was 65 million years ago. The average human lifespan is just 79 years. 

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16 April 2019

Stare into the Lens Until You Feel Comfortable

As a classical pianist and composer, my natural talent was present but practice was essential. You need one or the other to be good, and both to be exceptional. All the hours each day I spent writing and experimenting with musical devices, or exercising a variety of quirky, intricate techniques on the piano, were crucial to forming solid skills and artistry. Practice makes perfect, and it also provides confidence, endurance, and mastery for when the stage is set.

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11 March 2019

Is Chasing Ice an effective message on climate change?

In 2005 and 2006, photographer James Balog set out on expeditions to document the recession of the Sólheimajökull Glacier in Iceland. In many ways, these expeditions changed his life. In 2007, Balog and companions founded the Extreme Ice Survey (EIS), an organization devoted to documenting the effects of climate change on glaciers through time-lapse photography. Over 10 years later, the EIS “…provides scientists with basic and vitally important information on the mechanics of glacial melting and educates the public with firsthand evidence of how rapidly the Earth’s climate is changing.”

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4 March 2019

So, you wanna start a science blog?

I’m not the type of person who’s always thought that I’ve had something to say (at least anything that people would listen to). Back in my grad school days, while I saw the value in science outreach, the “communication” part of that was a little tricky for me. “Who cares what I have to say?” Turns out, some people did.

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