Scientist at Work is a New York Times group blog, showcasing the writing of scientists from many disciplines. The Times calls it “… the modern version of a field journal, a place for reports on the daily progress of scientific expeditions — adventures, misadventures, discoveries.”
Reports range from the lyrical writing of Mary E. Blair, a postdoc at the American Musem of Natural History’s Center for Biodiversity and Conservation, as she strives to understand the life history and genetic diversity of the slow loris, to Jeff Opperman, a senior freshwater scientist with the Nature Conservancy, describing his once-in-a-lifetime trip down Southeast Asia’s Mekong River with his wife and two children, ages 8 and 10.
Well worth reading and following if you’re looking for examples of how scientists can use blog to lend their personal voices to the work they do, and to express the sense of gee-whiz wonder that can come with the practice of science.
Check the latest episode of the Geek Whisperers podcast for an interview with Rakesh Bharania, who works as part of the Cisco Tactical Operations team. The team’s main job in emergencies is to help get large-scale communication and network systems back online when natural or man-made disaster strikes – but they also use a well-developed, coordinated social media strategy to help disseminate crisis information, rumor control and emergency coordination.
How might organizations such as Sea Grant, which have people on or close to the scene of coastal disasters & emergencies, develop our own strategies for using social media and similar tools to broaden our effectiveness in times of crisis?
A couple of resources that might be useful as you ponder today’s ScienceOnline topics:
Formal Science Education, Informal Science Education and Science Writing
Persuading the Unpersuadable: Communicating Science to Deniers, Cynics, and Trolls
Sea Grant Communications Director Joe Cone has developed a number of publications based on his NOAA-funded research with colleagues in Maine and elsewhere to understand how to develop sound information, grounded in surveys of local residents and opinion leaders, can give coastal communities the tools they need to actively prepare for climate change. The research is summarized here, with links to a number of videos and publications resulting from the project.
In addition, we’ve developed a number of short, free publications, grounded in this research, to provide science communicators with tools that can help them effectively deliver information about climate change and other “controversial” topics to the public.