My way to Science Communication

Photo by Marie-Lou Nussbaum

As a PHD student supervised by Sabine Sczesny and Peter Hegarty, I had the opportunity to be invited to the G-Versity Summer School in Berlin. What an honour to be part of a high-profile ESR-program – even if only for a week! It was a unique opportunity to meet other PHD students who are also involved in research on gender, to network, learn from each other and benefit from exciting lectures.

How thrilled I was to come to a new unfamiliar academic setting. This is probably why the seminar “PhD Toolkit: Resources for Mental Health and Self-management” by Katharina Bögl and Sandra Naumann had a great impact on me. I find it crucial that topics like the impostor syndrome are addressed in an early career training school. 

I also benefited greatly from the practical media production training by Branka Pavlovic and Carola Richter. I realised how important it is to disseminate research with appropriate tools and on different channels. The idea to record powerpoint slides inspired me right away and I applied it in a video presentation on Gender Diversity in (Swiss) Schools:

By following this Link you can find out more about this feature in PowerPoint.

Furthermore, I am convinced that promoting a research project by means of a video might be beneficial for the promotion and sample acquisition. I used this strategy for my own research project on gender diversity in Swiss schools with a short teaser film:

The effort for this is manageable but requires skills in illustration and professional equipment such as a sound studio and a specific camera. In a first step a script must be written, meaning the text that will later be recorded and first ideas for illustrations. The illustrations were drawn and coloured by hand and then slid into the monitor by hand under the camera. Finally, the sound and picture recordings must be edited and then the sound and picture tracks synchronised. Optional subtitles can be added at the end to reach a wider audience. For more information enter “hand drawn video” or “whiteboard animation” in your internet browser.

Although time-consuming, it is creative work and thus a balance to the brain-heavy research – and hopefully the effort will pay off when the project is being promoted and samples are being acquired!

Marie-Lou Nussbaum
Guest fellow at G-Versity
PhD student at the university of Bern 

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