The UK Association for Science and Discovery Centres (ASDC) and Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC) invited NERC funded environmental scientists and PHD students to the Training Academy for Environment Researchers on our Operation Earth Phase 2 project, which focussed on how to engage with the project as a method and tool for public engagement. This is part two of the Operation Earth national programme, that engaged over 200,000 children and families at Science Centres and events across the UK in its first year.
This lively Training Academy took place on Wednesday 20th January 2021 on Zoom
We were joined by members of NERC and guest speakers specialised in Public Engagement, Behavioural Psychology, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, and Climate Outreach. They shared their knowledge and techniques with attendees to help them engage the public in new ways during COVID, as well as offering a space to think on how they can design and plan engagement for COP26. We also showed the kit from Operation Earth and discussed ways to work more closely with Science Centres.
There were the following presentations from our wonderful Guest Speakers:
Engaging for Action, Dr Kris de Meyer
Being an effective climate change communicator, Dr Roz Pidecock, Climate Outreach
Effectively engaging people with your research using digital in these Covid times, Dr Jamie Gallagher
Training on the Operation Earth Hands-on equipment, Laura Gordon, Dynamic Earth
Embedding Sustainability, Candice Snelling & Sarah Tranter, NERC
Hannah Lacey, Public Engagement Programme Manager, NERC
There were limited places available which will were allocated on first come first served basis. Places are supported by NERC and therefore free to researchers.
About the Researcher Training Academy
The academy included:
Introductions to the programme and activities, a summary of the latest behavioural psychology, and engagement methods around climate and the way people think and make decisions
How can you reach wider more diverse audiences, and who in your university can help you?
Information on the latest data summaries they can use for areas outside your specialism, such as climate data or sea temperatures
How can you work with social scientists when discussing difficult issues and what resources can your university add
How can you continue working with the Science Centres or NERC central team and borrow the engagement kit into the future
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI), social sustainability and what you may need to consider when doing public engagement
Benefits of attending:
Increase skills and knowledge on how to engage the public with environmental science research
Training on using the Operation Earth kit; available to NERC researchers through NERC centres public engagement team, and through partnerships with Science Centres
Build relationships with Science Centres (locally and nationally)
Support from ASDC, NERC and Science Centres for the duration of the project and using the kit into the future
Platform to engage the public (digitally and face-to-face Coivd-19 dependent) in the run up to COP26
What is expected of you:
1-2 hours conducting preparation activities ahead of the training academy
Attendance at the training academy on Wednesday 20th January 2021
Attendance at a virtual coffee networking event, where a small group of NERC researchers on the training programme will be paired with a Science Centre for informal networking and discussion (optional but advised)
Willingness to engage with Science Centres and build relationships (virtually and when it allows, face-to-face)
Willingness to work with ASDC and NERC for all evaluation requirements for the training and project
Registration has Closed
For more information about this programme please contact Cait Campbell