Handling media frenzies - negotiating minefields in science communicationsRegister Now
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PRINZ and SCANZ are pleased to bring you this event in World Science Week NZ.
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Science is often contentious, almost always misunderstood. Communicating accurate information about emotive ideas is the challenge of Science Media Centres in a growing number of countries.
We are fortunate to have the founding directors of both the UK and New Zealand Science Media Centres in Auckland for World Science Week New Zealand. They'll be sharing with us how they handle media frenzies around disasters or impending disasters - from nuclear meltdowns and earthquakes to GM, vaccinations and the use of animals in research.
Their challenges are similar to many of those in PR and communication management, but perhaps more high profile and increasingly global.
Fiona Fox has a degree in journalism and 25 years of experience in working in media relations for high profile national organisations. Her career includes stints working for the Equal Opportunities Committee, National Council for One Parent Families, and CAFOD (a leading aid agency), before her current role as Chief Executive of the Science Media Centre which opened in April 2002. The main remit of the Centre is to help restore public trust in science by persuading more scientists to engage more effectively with the big controversial science stories that hit the headlines. She was the only representative of the science community to appear as a witness at the Leveson Inquiry and blogs and comments regularly on science in the media. Fiona is in New Zealand for World Science Week NZ.
Peter Griffin is the founding manager of the New Zealand Science Media Centre and the founder and editor of Sciblogs. Prior to founding the SMC, he was technology editor of the New Zealand Herald, winning numerous awards. He was also the technology columnist for the Herald on Sunday and a commentator for TVNZ, Radio New Zealand and Radio Live. In 2005 he relocated to Wellington to complete a Masters degree in creative writing at Victoria University's Institute of Modern Letters. Peter was the 2012 Fulbright-Harkness Fellow and undertook research in the US looking at centres of excellence in public interest journalism.
Dr Susannah Eliott CEO, Australian Science Media Centre has a PhD in cell biology from Macquarie University, a Graduate Diploma in Journalism from the University of Technology, Sydney and more than 18 years of practical experience in science communication with the science-media nexus as her primary focus. In 2000, Susannah moved to Stockholm, Sweden as Communications Director for the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP), an international network of scientists working on global environmental change. She moved to Adelaide in September 2005 to help establish the Australian Science Media Centre. In 2010, she chaired the Expert Working Group on Science and the Media for the Federal Government.
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