When science hits the headlines
From health scares to ash clouds to potential nuclear crises, the UK’s Science Media Centre works hard to ensure that the public and policymakers have access to evidence-based scientific information through the media when science hits the headlines in the UK media.
With a view to explaining the role of the Science Media Centre to interested French audiences, the Centre’s Founding Director, Fiona Fox, came out to Paris on Tuesday 23 April. Fiona saw a wide range of French organisations, including journalists, businesses, researchers, the Higher Education & Research Ministry, policy makers and elected members of the Senate and National Assembly. Her aim: to understand how French journalists react to and report science related stories in the news and discuss ways in which the lessons learnt from the Science Media Centre could be of use in France.
Fiona Fox said:
I found visiting Paris fascinating – meeting with policy-makers, businesses, researchers and journalists highlighted not only France’s rich history of scientific excellence but, like in the UK, the challenges that can come in the relationship between science and the French media. I hope the visit has been useful in terms of explaining the Science Media Centre model and giving some food for thought as to how an SMC or a similar system could work in France.
The Science Media Centre is an independent body which has been running for 10 years in the UK. It offers a range of services to media organisations in the UK, including briefing journalists, reacting rapidly to breaking science stories, and ensuring the best science voices from the science world are heard as quickly as possible. Their philosophy is:
The media will DO science better when scientists DO the media better
For more information on the Science Media Centre, please visit their website: www.sciencemediacentre.org or follow them on Twitter @SMC_London