The Science Media Centre was on campus this week running a workshop exclusively for Ngā Ara Whetū affiliates to enhance their communication skills with the media and the public.
“I found the media training workshop highly beneficial,” said Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering Lokesh Padhye. “I wholeheartedly recommend this workshop to others because it emphasises the importance of scientists voicing their opinions rather than remaining silent.
“My key takeaway was realising the value of our opinions and their potential positive impact on society when communicated effectively and in a timely manner. The Science Media Centre plays a vital role in helping us achieve this.”
Over the two hour workshop, communication experts from Science Media Centre offered advice and feedback to participants, helping them refine their messages and handle challenging questions tactfully.
The workshop delved into the art of storytelling, understanding how to convey their research findings in a compelling and relatable manner. Through engaging exercises and role-playing, they learned to embrace clarity and simplicity without compromising the integrity of their work.
Communication is key for researchers who want to get the most impact out of their research. Here are five reasons why researchers must upskill in the art of communication:
- Bridging the Gap: Research can often be complex and technical. By learning to communicate effectively, researchers can bridge the gap between intricate scientific concepts and the public’s understanding, making their work more accessible and relatable.
- Inspiring Engagement: Engaging and relatable communication sparks curiosity and interest among the public. Researchers who can tell captivating stories about their work are more likely to captivate audiences and encourage them to support and take an interest in science.
- Driving Positive Change: Many research findings have the potential to influence policies and shape societal decisions. By communicating their work effectively, researchers amplify their impact, increasing the likelihood that their findings will drive positive change.
- Building Trust: Effective communication builds trust and credibility with the public. Researchers who can communicate clearly and transparently are more likely to gain the trust of the communities they serve.
- Strengthening Collaboration: Effective communication fosters collaboration between researchers from different disciplines and institutions. It encourages exchanging ideas, leading to innovative and holistic solutions to complex challenges.