On the 4th of July, #BrumSciComm turned three years old. This is a good opportunity to reflect and celebrate on what we’ve done, but also ask you what you would like to see us try.
We’ve held a social event every month since we were born and have welcomed artists, industry professionals, academics and researchers from all disciplines, whether science or otherwise. Many have come from universities across the region, including Aston, Birmingham, Coventry, Leicester, Warwick, Wolverhampton and Worcester. We’ve also welcomed fellow science communicators passing through the region as they hold conferences, training and festivals such as the Big Bang Fair. Thank you to everyone who has come along.
Since being born, we have teamed up with the Royal Society of Chemistry for some things, including the ‘Attitudes to Chemistry’ night at the Gunmakers Arms and they kindly provided funding for us to go and play science at the recent CoCoMAD festival in Cotteridge Park. The Cheltenham Science Festival worked with us to host the Midlands heats of Famelab for the last two years as well. We’d like to thank Helen and Selina for helping us.
Special thanks must also go to those places that have given us space for free. Thanks to Thinktank Science Museum, Cherry Reds, the Gunmakers Arms, BrewDog Birmingham, PureCraft Bar, Resorts World and the University of Birmingham.
It’s been a little over a year since we had a website, which has had viewers in 64 countries reading our 279 news posts. A big shout out must go to those who have followed us for updates. We hope they are proving useful.
Within the last year, we have also become registered with the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement (NCCPE) as a supporting network in their Public Engagement Ambassador Scheme (PEAS). #BrumSciComm is listed as a network for the regions of the the South West, all of Wales, the North-West and North East of England. That is pretty big, so we are encouraging other scicomm networks to join the scheme in all areas. A big thanks to Laura and Penny.
We are just about to hold our third family picnic. Details are in the calendar for that, so you have no excuse not to compete in the third #GreatBrumSciCommBakeOff. One thing we’ve learned is not to eat anything Jon makes.
Finally, we want to thank everyone who has turned out to share their passions with the public. Whether you volunteered to support an event like the hugely successful Pint of Science; attended the long-running Cafe Scientifique or Skeptics events; did a Meet the Scientist event at Thinktank, visited an exhibition at Birmingham Open Media (BOM), provided us with news, or indeed help us spread it; we want to thank you for being part of the culture of public engagement and science communication in the region.
We set out to pull together a community of practitioners, no matter what their practice and allow them to share skills, ideas and get creative. This is still what we aim to do. Question to you is, what would you like us to try to make this better?
Jon & Naomi