Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Give science journalists a break!

There's a strong defence of the work of science journalists in The Frontal Cortex (via sciencecommunication.org). People are sometimes frustrated by the non-critical style of "breakthrough reporting" of scientific developments in the mainstream media,
but Jonah Lehrer - an editor at large for Seed Magazine - argues that this is the fault of the major scientific journals who impose strict embargoes on their press colleagues...
Once we stop letting scientific journals control the flow of scientific news, I think you will start seeing less regurgitated press releases and more of the stuff that defines great journalism everywhere: stories about the scientific process, stories that reveal science as a human enterprise, stories that put research in its proper context. One possibility is that the public likes science; they just don't like reading press releases.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Grants to communicate physics

The latest edition of the Institute of Physics "interactions" physics community newspaper highlights their innovative grants scheme for the UK and Ireland.

Building on the success of their support for physics communication efforts during Einstein Year in 2005, they are offering grants to individuals and organisations again this year - the closing date for applications is 3 November 2006 and more information is available on the web and via e-mail from physics.society@iop.org

According to "interactions":

The grants are worth up to £1000 and are awarded to individuals and organisations who want to organise a physics-based outreach activity in the UK and Ireland during 2007.
Previous projects supported by these grants have covered[...] a series of three discussions on the philosophy of physics in a London pub; a giant outdoor physics poem in Bristol and a workshop on the physics of transport at the London Science Museum.