Thursday, November 29, 2012

Inspiring Science: A few thoughts on science communication

I originally wrote this as a guest post for Speaking of Science, a blog that tries to "de-mystify science communication by offering interviews, news, and anything else about it."

When Julie asked me to write about why I think science communication is important, I started jotting down a list of reasons. Science has an undeniable impact and prominence in our world, which has benefited from the accumulated fruits of centuries of research. As citizens, we shape this world and are shaped by it, so it's important to understand the science behind the questions we're discussing, from antibiotics and GMOs to the value of a Mars mission or research in theoretical physics.  This kind of understanding can also be important on an individual level. Knowing more about how your body works can help you make informed decisions about diet and lifestyle or medical procedures -- or even what kind of birth control to use. These are important aspects of science communication, but they're not really a source of inspiration to me or a guiding factor in deciding what I write about. Science communicators do have a responsibility to fulfil a role in mediating these discussion, and though I try to keep aware of that and contribute, it's not where my passion truly lies.

Continue reading at Inspiring Science...