Wednesday, April 23, 2014

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Speaking and writing so your audience understands you

August 10, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing

Brian Curran forwarded me this article about how to communicate with the public in active voice using straightforward, easy-to-understand language. Reading this article took me back to my time in Finland a few years ago. I loved to use colorful language and turns of phrases when I lived in the U.S. Then, in Finland, I […]

Junk the Jargon Interview on Public Engagement

An oldie, but goodie. Here is an interview (Junkcast) I did for the University of Manchester Junk the Jargon competition. I talk about my own experiences good and bad with public engagement, tips for connecting with the audience, and the origins of Eloquent Science.

The Posture of Tyrannosaurus rex and the Clash of Air Masses

May 28, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing

An article in Journal of Geoscience Education by Ross et al. states, “Today’s students were born well after the dramatic scientific reinterpretations of theropod dinosaur stance and metabolism of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Yet, if asked to draw a picture of Tyrannosaurus rex, most of these students will likely draw an animal with […]

Let there be stoning!

Thanks to Bogdan Antonescu for pointing out to me the latest entry in Garr Reynold’s Presentation Zen blog. It discusses an article “Let there be stoning!” written by Jay Lehr about bringing an end to incredibly boring speakers. If only more speakers would follow this advice: The average conference paper is 20 minutes in length. […]

Market your science on YouTube

May 1, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, News

This past Christmas break I read Explaining Research by Dennis Meredith. As his bio states, “Dennis Meredith’s career as a science communicator has included service at some of the country’s leading research universities, including MIT, Caltech, Cornell, Duke and the University of Wisconsin. He has worked with science journalists at all the nation’s major newspapers, […]

Misrepresenting Science: Saturn’s North Pole “Hurricane”

May 1, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured

By now, you may have read about the imagery from the Cassini mission to Saturn. The NASA press release calls it a “large hurricane”. The European Space Agency has a similar release. Nice false-color imagery, yes. But, bad science. Hurricanes are storms fueled by the release of latent heat from condensing water that is originally […]

Communicating low-probability events

April 14, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Publishing

The authors start by asking, “What is the best way to communicate the risk of rare but extreme weather to the public?” Through a role-playing game where students pretended to be in charge of a road-salting operation, LeClerc and Joslyn (2012) found that the students were more likely to salt when receiving forecasts of temperatures […]

Scientists need “adequate communication skills”

April 5, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured

…we should focus on equipping Earth scientists with adequate communication skills, and heighten their understanding of how their words … will be perceived. So says the Editorial “Communication at Risk” in the February 2013 issue of Nature Geoscience about the L’Aquila earthquake trial. I couldn’t agree more. Thanks to Martin Gallagher for pointing out this […]

Review of Explaining Research by Dennis Meredith

I love to read books, journal articles, and magazines. During the academic semester, I have almost no time to read. I try to catch up during the summers and the Christmas break. This break was no exception, and I got to wrap my fingers around Dennis Meredith’s Explaining Research: How to Reach Key Audiences to […]

Speaking Science to the Public

March 11, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog, Featured, Resources, Writing

A while back, I was asked about the type of guidance that I would provide someone who wanted to communicate to the public via their National Hydrometeorological Service’s Web page. The book I most highly recommend is “Don’t Be Such a Scientist”. The author definitely has an American way of writing, so nonnative American English […]

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