Tag: Kate Cooper

Science engagement and communication with social media

How do scientists let us know what they’re up to?  More importantly, perhaps how do they help us understand what they’re doing?  The communication of science is crucial… and next week Podnosh will be working with science communicators from all over Europe to explore how social media can play a role in their work.

It’s not the first time we’ve done this. We thoroughly enjoyed social reporting for a Europe wide project on communicating science early in 2011.  We were supporting Kate Cooper at The New Optimists and our work helped flush out enough detail in one conference to create a final conference report (essentially) on the day (radically speeding up how these things often happen)

It’s all part of a European project, ‘PLACES’ and as well as finding out about projects from other parts of Europe we’ll be looking at two very successful projects that we know about – Shane McCracken from Gallomanor will be giving the background to ‘I’m a Scientist Get Me Out of Here…’  and the (again) Kate Cooper’s New Optimists  is a great example of how social media can help to grow a project.

Any science projects online that we should be looking at?  Tell us about the ones that have caught your eye.


#tnofood Food, Science and Birmingham – The first New Optimists forum.

These are the faces of the latest bunch of New Optimists and if you’re interested in the future of Birmingham and the future of how we feed ourselves you may just want to follow their conversation as part of job we’re doing tomorrow  (Wednesday 2nd November 6 – 9 pm) .

We will be live blogging the first  New Optimists Forum – a conversation between these fine folk…ten scientists, an architect (last year’s RIBA President no less) and the city’s development strategist take part …. They are Eugenio, Hanifa, Peter and Gareth  (l-r, top row); Rosemary, Jim, Peter and Ruth (l-r, middle row); David, Helen, Ian and Liz (l-r, bottom row).

It’s the first of a number of events which will concentrate on the fascinating issues of how we feed ourselves, and happens to fall in the week we welcomed the babies that pushed our population over 7 billion.

The simplest way to follow and join the conversation is through the twitter hashtag  #tnofood (The New Optimists on Food).  We’re not live streaming this first one but will be sharing material as it happens.

If you’re curious about the New Optimists it’s a Birmingham based not for profit organisation set up by Kate Cooper.  She started by asking scientists what makes them optimistic and ended up publishing a fab book called The New Optimists – still available on Amazon.


The New Optimists – "the most exhilarating of books"

Nigh on a year ago Kate Cooper walked into a social media surgery here in Birmingham and started talking about a book she was going to publish.

She had, she told me, persuaded 80 or so scientists from the West Midlands to write a few hundred words in response to the question “what makes you optimistic?” Jenny Uglow (the historian who wrote the brilliant story of the Lunar Society:  The Lunar Men) had agreed to write the foreword.

At the time I thought oh yeh… Read more