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Working with the media to communicate your science

July 29, 2020 @ 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm

An interactive Second Century Stewardship session at the North American Congress for Conservation Biology. Conference registration is required to participate.

Most Americans learn about science from the news media. But how do reporters decide what stories to tell? How do you make your research interesting to their readers? Working with the media can help you improve how you tell your own story, while also helping to share your science with broad and diverse audiences. This session is a fast-pace workshop in crafting your message, practicing your delivery, and interacting with a panel of conservation science journalists and editors representing national and regional magazines and newspapers. After a short introduction, participants will identify the “news moments” of their research project or subject, develop a message, and practice delivering their message out loud. A randomly selected subset of participants will then (briefly) pitch their stories to a panel of news writers and editors, who will provide feedback. The final part of the session will provide all participants with the opportunity to ask questions of the panel during a moderated discussion. Participants will learn about the needs, interests, and methods of their fellow conservation scientists and the media, while gaining practical skill in creating conservation messages and identifying stories that resonate with public audiences.

Presented by Catherine Schmitt, and since the conference was originally scheduled to take place in Denver, Colorado, the panel consists of Colorado-based writers and editors, including:

Christie Aschwanden, journalist and author of GOOD TO GO: What the athlete in all of us can learn from the strange science of recovery

Bob Berwyn, journalist (now based in Europe) for Inside Climate News, Hakai Magazine, Pacific Standard, and others.

Caitlin Looby, scientist, AAAS Media Fellow (2019), writer with credits in The New York Times, The Times Picayune, Canoe & Kayak.

Hillary Rosner, journalist covering the environment for National Geographic, Wired, Scientific American, and many other publications.

Aaron Sidder, scientists and AAAS Media Fellow (2016); writing credits include National Geographic Kids, Eos, Smithsonian Magazine.

Natasha Vizcarra, science writer for publications of Hawai’i Sea Grant, Center for International Forest Research, Global Landscapes Forum, and others.