[ASC-list] Where is the ASC headed and top 10 reasons

Mobile Science Education info at mobilescienceeducation.com.au
Fri Nov 15 05:37:48 UTC 2013


I agree that the conference is *potentially* powerful. But currently that
potential is limited to a minority of ASC members - perhaps the rest may not
feel like subsidising the networking opportunities of the few people who can
afford to actually be there. And yes, subsidise is the word.

I also believe that the reason some smaller organisations successfully hold
an annual conference is because they are more unified in what they do, have
a tighter focus, and  the field has a longer history as a recognised
profession - we do not have those advantages (see my original post).

I agree that it is a chance to engage with science leaders but, again, it is
a chance for the few of us who can be there. Perhaps the rest would rather
the money, time and effort were being spent elsewhere?

I'm not sure I agree at all about best practice because a) I haven't
actually seen it (not being there, and all...), and b) who makes the
determination of 'best practice' and on what metric?

The conference is indeed where some of us can engage with other groups. Not
many of us, though - what about the rest of us? The conference can broaden
horizons for some few of us, yes - but what about the rest of us?

Do you see my point? I am not, an any way, opposed to a national science
communication conference. What I am opposed to is trying to pull one off
with *such limited resources* on behalf of *so few* of our members and with
such a low success rate.

Lee Harrison
Mobile Science Education
 
0430 588 757 or (08) 8395 9586
info at mobilescienceeducation.com.au
www.mobilescienceeducation.com.au
PO Box 556, Ingle Farm, SA 5098

-----Original Message-----
From: Niall Byrne [mailto:niall at scienceinpublic.com.au] 
Sent: Friday, 15 November 2013 3:26 PM
To: Mobile Science Education; 'Lisa Bailey'; asc-list at lists.asc.asn.au
Subject: RE: [ASC-list] Where is the ASC headed and top 10 reasons

I disagree. 

The conference is potentially incredibly powerful. I'd argue that as ASC
grows it should become an annual conference. Many smaller organisations do
so successfully including the medical writers. 

It's where we can engage with science leaders for example for the coming ASC
conference we'll have the opportunity to grill the head of the ARC and
hopefully of the NHMRC and CSIRO on their priorities in science
communication. 

It's where we can engage with some of the best practice in the game. 

It's where we can engage with other groups - for example the AusSMC and
RIAus have often arranged for their board meetings to coincide with ASC
conferences. And that's led to past and present SMH editors, Channel Nine
news directors and others sharing their perspectives with us. 

It broadens our horizons. 

It enables collaborations. Three of our past conferences have been
collaborations and I think our next one is a collaboration with SCANZ. 

Several of the conferences have stood as milestones in science communication
and I expect they will continue to do so. 

Niall
________

Niall Byrne
 
Science in Public
0417 131 977, niall at scienceinpublic.com.au Twitter scienceinpublic Full
contact details at www.scienceinpublic.com.au



-----Original Message-----
From: Mobile Science Education [mailto:info at mobilescienceeducation.com.au]
Sent: Friday, 15 November 2013 3:37 PM
To: Niall Byrne; 'Lisa Bailey'; asc-list at lists.asc.asn.au
Subject: RE: [ASC-list] Where is the ASC headed and top 10 reasons

So the 2007 conference isn't really indicative of an ASC conference.

The money is only part of it, though. Even if the money weren't such an
issue, it still takes the majority of the time made available by staff and
volunteers; time used to benefit only a small minority of members who can
afford the time and expense of the conference. If so much time, risk, effort
and expense is benefiting only the minority then I would say priorities have
been misplaced.

I would also question Nancy's assertion that "the biennial gathering of
science communicators for a face to face meeting is crucial". Why is it
crucial? Nothing on the posted list of Top 10 Reasons requires one. I agree
that a decent national conference would be a good goal to work toward, but I
would suggest that it's a goal that belongs to the larger organisation that
ASC could be in the future. In the meantime, strengthen the base by focusing
efforts at the local chapters and online. Make ASC such an attractive
association that the eventual membership roll justifies the conference.

I would also second Rob's call to reconsider Julian's proposed Code of
Ethics, or anyone else's proposals for that matter.

Lee Harrison
Mobile Science Education
 
0430 588 757 or (08) 8395 9586
info at mobilescienceeducation.com.au
www.mobilescienceeducation.com.au
PO Box 556, Ingle Farm, SA 5098

-----Original Message-----
From: ASC-list [mailto:asc-list-bounces at lists.asc.asn.au] On Behalf Of Niall
Byrne
Sent: Friday, 15 November 2013 1:46 PM
To: Lisa Bailey; asc-list at lists.asc.asn.au
Subject: Re: [ASC-list] Where is the ASC headed and top 10 reasons

The 2007 conference was held jointly with AMWA and the World Federation of
Science Journalists and attracted 620 delegates. There were a few other spin
out activities.

There's potential for ASC to do similar things in the future with PCST,
WFSJ, and others. Of course the first ASC conference was held with the PCST
in 1996.

However, the 2007 conference was also a large undertaking with a total
budget in excess of $1.2 million. Some of us involved in it took some big
personal financial risks for which we were compensated when the dollars came
in post-event. Many others put in a great deal of time.  

Niall

________

Niall Byrne
 
Science in Public
0417 131 977, niall at scienceinpublic.com.au Twitter scienceinpublic Full
contact details at www.scienceinpublic.com.au



-----Original Message-----
From: ASC-list [mailto:asc-list-bounces at lists.asc.asn.au] On Behalf Of Lisa
Bailey
Sent: Friday, 15 November 2013 1:53 PM
To: asc-list at lists.asc.asn.au
Subject: Re: [ASC-list] Where is the ASC headed and top 10 reasons

The 2007 conference did co-incide with a much larger international World
Conference of Science Journalists didn't it?  Might explain why there was a
bigger drawcard that year.  




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