This post comes from a group of our students who recently went to Bristol to explain some of their work to a mixed audience.
The Tobacco Factory in the heart of Bristol was the location of two recent talks on sustainability by CSCT PhD students. The students formed two panels to present their respective expertise at a recent Science Café event under the headings of “What’s in Your Shopping Bag?” and “Fuelling the Future”.
The first group involving Thomas Forder, Julia Griffin, Luke Williams, Rebecca Bamford and Will Reynolds spoke about the chemicals and elements that most people will encounter on a day-to-day basis, most likely without even realising it. This went on to address some of the negative preconceptions people might bear towards perfectly benign or indeed beneficial chemicals.
Lee Burton, Lisa Sargeant and Daniel Minett delivered the second talk discussing the ways in which we can move away from fossil fuels to cleanly and efficiently power the world of tomorrow. This included a variety of important topics ranging from climate change to renewable energies in the context of recent policy changes at home and abroad.
Both talks were followed by questions from the 40-strong audience leading to a wider dialogue between all participants, from retired professors to students with no scientific background.
Laura Walker, who co-ordinates the events, said she was “very impressed … with the high calibre of these students and the excellent talks they delivered … with confidence and clarity. The presentations were excellent and pitched exactly right for the diverse audience.”
The students also attracted the interest of others working to deliver science to a wider audience, including the director of Bristol based company My Future My Choice, Mr Hugh Thomas. Building on the successes of these events to further extend the impact of our science, the CSCT congratulates our students on their continued excellence in the field of public engagement.