London SciComm Symposium 2017

On Thursday 11th May 2017 we held the second London SciComm Symposium, in partnership with the Queen Mary University of London Centre for Public Engagement (CPE), and Centre of the Cell. The event saw over 140 guests join 20 speakers to share their recent science communication projects, ideas, and inspiration. The day was a huge success, with through provoking discussions and challenges from our speakers, and lots and lots of networking.

The event was free to attend, but we requested a donation to charity to book a place. We raised an amazing £1117.80 for the Stifford Centre, a charity based in Tower Hamlets who act as a community hub providing local residents with resources and services empowering them to lead healthier and more prosperous lives.

We tried to create sessions that reflect the community that have come to the London SciComm Socials, while also listening to the feedback we received following the previous symposium. You told us you wanted more opportunities to network, so in 2017 Centre of the Cell offered special mini-tours for symposium attendees – a perfect opportunity to see inside a science education centre and get to know fellow symposium attendees better.

The day was split in to three main sections:

  • Session 1: The Informal SciComm sector; what we do, how it works and how to get involved – This session looked at science culture, freelancing, and performance, with speakers from a range of different organisations and career levels.
  • Session 2: The Formal SciComm sector; what we do, how it works and how to get involved – We explored the formal science communication sector; looking at the relationships researchers can have with science centres, festivals, and their host universities.
  • Session 3: Broadening the participants and audiences for SciComm; how can we get past the usual suspects communicating with the usual suspects? With help from communications professionals, performers, researchers, and public engagement support staff, we looked at how science communication and public engagement can broaden it’s reach and become a more diverse sector.

Panel discussion with the speakers from Session 1: The Informal SciComm sector; what we do, how it works and how to get involved

Our speakers included: