The Science, Health, and Television Study

Recruitment for the Science, Health, and Television Study has now closed. The study aimed to investigate how audiences respond to science and health issues depicted in narrative fiction.

Thank you to everyone who participated.

Participants have now been emailed a debriefing of the research objectives. If you participated in the study but did not receive a debriefing email, or if you have any questions regarding the study, please contact Jarrod.Green@anu.edu.au

Report: ‘ANU Health and Wellbeing Communication with Students’, by Amanda Tully

Former undergraduate science communication student Amanda Tully completed this report in 2013 for her SCOM3003 Special Topics in Science Communication Research project.

Download the report here. Tully, A. (2013). ANU Health and Wellbeing Communication with Students. Completed at the Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Sciecen for assessment in SCOM3003 Special Topics in Science Communication. Produced for the use of the ANU Medicine, Health and Wellbeing Learning Community and other university stakeholders.

How do Australians engage with science? A survey commissioned by Inspiring Australia through the Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science (CPAS), The Australian National University

The ‘How do Australians engage with science?’ report, commissioned by Inspiring Australia, designed and directed by CPAS Research Fellow Dr Suzette Searle, and conducted by IPSOS Public Affairs, was released to the public on 27 May 2014.

Download the report here. Searle, S.D. (2014). How do Australians engage with science. April 2014

The Hendra Story: A Triumph for Australian Science

Guest post by Erin O’Neill, Visiting Fellow at The Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science

1. THE NATURAL HISTORY OF HENDRA VIRUS

When most people think of Australia, they imagine long coastlines with beautiful beaches, magnificent deep red deserts, the Opera House and cuddly koalas and kangaroos.  The more jelly-legged will profess a concern for sharks (of any kind), snakes, crocodiles, blue ringed octopus, funnel web spiders, jelly fish and possibly cassowaries.

They don’t think of one of the deadliest viruses that humanity has had to reckon with.

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Doctor Who Zoe and Romana survey information

A debrief for participants who completed the Doctor Who Zoe and Romana survey in late 2012.

Thank you for completing this survey and for your interest. The survey is now closed.

The rationale behind it was to investigate fan perceptions of the relationships between Zoe and the Doctor and Romana and the Doctor respectively. It is my perception that both relationships are characterised by conflict, often intellectual or scientific conflict, but that the power dynamics and indeed gender dynamics between each pair are qualitatively different. I wanted to find out if other fans thought the same way.

Unfortunately, there were not enough responses to the survey to make any meaningful generalisations about that, so I will not be publishing the survey results. However, if I do publish any work on this topic I will post an update here.

Thanks again for the generous donation of your time in completing the survey.

Putting a stop to deadly diarrhoea

Guest post by Arwen Cross

“Cholera is frightened of a collar and tie” is an old saying in Mozambique, explains Jim Black. It’s not the dress-code that’s important, but the wealth it represents. Cholera, like other deadly forms of diarrhoea, is a poor man’s disease. Wealthier people have better living standards which include access to clean water and sanitation – the keys to avoiding diarrhoea. “I guess the moral of the story is to make people rich so they won’t get cholera anymore,” jokes Michael Emch. But since poverty is a difficult problem to solve, scientists are working out other ways to prevent this deadly disease. Continue reading

The outrage cycle, or why trolling works

Thanks to the world’s esteemed opinion writers, we’ve recently learned why ‘Chinese Mothers are Superior‘, how ‘bogans in shopping centres have no souls‘, and, thanks to Mark Latham, that “anyone who chooses a life without children, as [Australian Prime Minister] Gillard has, cannot have much love in them”.

Trolls the lot of them. Deliberately offensive flamebait.

Now, with a line up of Catherine Deveny, Gerard Henderson and Graham Richardson, I suspect we’re likely to be further ‘enlightened’ by QandA tonight as well.

I wrote recently about the benefits of social reading – that social media can provide a better reading experience than editorially made traditional media – but I’ve since realised that trolling is the clear and present downside downside to this. This post explores how this dynamic works. Continue reading

A Study of Social Media in Science Communication

Guest post by Kristin Alford

Kristin: In November I attended a communications stakeholders meeting comprising representatives from science and research institutions from around Australia. It struck me that again that different organsiations have different goals in undertaking science communications. And then it struck me, that while I am an avid and open user of Twitter, was it also that corporate Twitter accounts needed to have an identifiable personality, someone to connect with? What were good social media practices for science organisations?

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