[ASC-list] further to recent list conversations: topics of interest to our members

Kali Madden office at asc.asn.au
Mon Jul 8 08:35:34 UTC 2013


Hi Sarah, Bianca, Lynn and ASC-Listers,

Re: *"Getting back to the ASC, are these questions important for us to
consider as a community of people who talk about science in public spaces?
I think yes, and I’m hoping this may come up as a potential topic for the
ASC conference in February 2014. In addition to hearing from communicators
and journalists who are ASC members, it’d be great to invite ‘outsiders’
along to get their perspectives as well.

I’m looking forward to the conference."*

As around 20% of you attend the ASC conferences I suspect a good deal of
the conference program is made up of things suggested and/or actively
discussed here.

Sarah, agree that this sounds like an ASC2014 session brewing!

The official call for ASC2014 Session Producers is due out very soon so it
is probably a great time to think about, and invite discussion about,
topics that are important to our roles and community identity. Consider who
would be the right speakers/presenters/participants for such a topic, or
who would be facilitate a deeply interactive group think-tank!?!

Cheers,



Kali Madden

Executive Officer, Australian Science Communicators

& ASC Conference Director 2012, 2010


office at asc.asn.au
http://www.asc.asn.au/



On Mon, Jul 8, 2013 at 4:03 PM, Sarah Keenihan <sarahkeenihan at gmail.com>wrote:

> Dear fellow members of the Australian Science Communicators,
>
> Like Lynn and Bianca, I too am very interested in considering perpectives
> on science journalism and science communication, and how the two
> interrelate.
>
> It interests me on a personal level because I’m trying to work out where I
> fit along the science writing continuum. However of course there are also
> bigger implications. Implications for:
>
> • How we (the people who talk about science) define our goals;
> • How we, governments and consumers make decisions about who pays
> for communication and journalism content;
> • How the public interprets material with a scientific flavour; and
> • Whether this material has the desired or indeed any impact.
>
> I’ve written a few blog posts in recent weeks trying to get my brain
> around aspects of this. (If you’re interested, it started with Journalism
> is dead?<http://scienceforlife365.wordpress.com/2013/06/27/day-318-journalism-is-dead/>,
> then progressed to Journalism versus communication<http://scienceforlife365.wordpress.com/2013/06/30/day-320-journalism-versus-communication/> and
> finally resulted in this duo: Profile of a science journalist<http://scienceforlife365.wordpress.com/2013/07/01/day-321-profile-of-a-science-journalist/>
>  and Profile of a science communicator<http://scienceforlife365.wordpress.com/2013/07/01/day-322-profile-of-a-science-communicator/>.
> Of course my descriptions are not perfect – please add comments if you feel
> so inspired).
>
> Whilst I’ve found the process of writing these posts helpful in clarifying
> my own thoughts, of course now I have more questions.
>
> What I’m really interested in is the intersection of the two specialities,
> communication and journalism. Here are some issues which plague me:
>
> • In writing and reading job definitions or descriptions, how can one
> distinguish between a ‘science journalist’ and a ‘science communicator’?
> • Can one person effectively swap from writing as a journalist (for
> example, for a newspaper) to writing as a communicator (for example, for a
> science institution)?
> i.e. is switching from relatively unbiased to somewhat biased writing a
> comfortable transition?
> • Is it important that science writers themselves have an awareness of the
> difference between science journalism and science communication?
> • How can readers of science writing tell the difference between science
> journalism and science communication?
>
> Related questions are being raised in other arenas as well: see this piece
> by Matthew Ingram entitled Thanks to the web, journalism is now something
> you do – not something you are<http://scienceforlife365.wordpress.com/Thanks%20to%20the%20web,%20journalism%20is%20now%20something%20you%20do%20%E2%80%94%20not%20something%20you%20are> which
> explores the relationships between advocacy/activism and journalism.
>
> Getting back to the ASC, are these questions important for us to consider
> as a community of people who talk about science in public spaces? I think
> yes, and I’m hoping this may come up as a potential topic for the ASC
> conference in February 2014. In addition to hearing from communicators and
> journalists who are ASC members, it’d be great to invite ‘outsiders’ along
> to get their perspectives as well.
>
> I’m looking forward to the conference.
>
> Regards,
>
> Sarah
> Sarah Keenihan
> PhD | BMedSci | GradDipSciComm
>
> Reading, writing and interpreting science. And other stuff.
>
> 0419 976 834 | @sciencesarah | http://sciencesarah.wordpress.com/
>
> Special Project: Science For Life.365
> http://scienceforlife365.wordpress.com |
> http://www.facebook.com/scienceforlife365
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> On 05/07/2013, at 7:40 AM, Bianca Nogrady wrote:
>
> Thanks for posting this Lynne - it's an interesting read.
>
> At the risk of opening a can of worms, I'm intrigued by the fact that a
> number of science journalists take the stand that they are not a 'cheer
> squad' for science, as Pallab Ghosh is described as saying in this article.
>
> I understand very well that the job of a good science journalist is to ask
> the hard questions, to look critically at the data, to ask where the money
> come from and not to assume that science is truth.
>
> But this assertion that one is not a cheerleader for science feels almost
> like a statement of emnity, like we have to take a stand against the hordes
> of pom-pom waving fanatics.
>
> Isn't it possible to be both? I'm proud to proclaim that I'm an
> unrepentant science nerd. I love science and the process of scientific
> discovery and the knowledge that comes from that, and I'm always raving to
> friends about some amazing new bit of info I've discovered.
>
> I'm very happy to stand up and trumpet 'Hooray for Science!' but I don't
> think this makes me any less of an effective journalist.
>
> I'd be really interested to know people's thoughts on this.
>
> Bianca
>
>
> On 5 July 2013 07:26, Griffiths, Lynne <Lynne.Griffiths at nwc.gov.au> wrote:
>
>> Hi ASC
>>
>> SciDev.Net has launched a new-look website -
>> http://www.scidev.net/global/.  Their latest editorial features a
>> discussion on science journalism and communication in the global context -
>> http://www.scidev.net/global/communication/editorial-blog/science-journalism-and-communication-make-a-good-match.html?utm_medium=email&utm_source=SciDev.Net&utm_campaign=2679242_Launch+email+EN&utm_content=KazEditorial&dm_i=1SCG,1LFBE,AZRIZP,5IAH7,1
>>
>> There are related articles that may be of interest -
>> http://www.scidev.net/global/communication/
>>
>> Cheers
>>
>> Lynne Griffiths
>> Director, Communication and Parliamentary Liaison
>> National Water Commission
>> T 02 6102 6023   M 0412 786 945
>> lynne.griffiths at nwc.gov.au
>> nwc.gov.au
>>
>>
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>
>
> --
> ********************************************************
> *Freelance science journalist, author and broadcaster*
> www.biancanogrady.com, 0411 420 913, Blackheath, NSW, Australia
>
> *The End: The Human Experience of Death* (Random House Australia, May
> 2013)
> www.theendbook.net, Twitter: @TheEndBook
>
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