I consider science communication and public engagement to be a really important part of any scientist’s career. Thus, I’ve tried to do a substantial amount of it. Here are a few examples:
- Trinidad and Tobago Field Naturalist Club, Trinidad and Tobago.
- Presentation of the findings from the Marianas expedition of the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer to the stakeholders Guam and the CNMI. You can read about that here.
- Sitka WhaleFest 2015, Sitka, Alaska – Read all about it here.
- Marine Life Talk: Dinner in the Deep – National Oceanography Centre, Southampton.
- Telepresence via the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer – As a past Biology Lead and a contributing scientist onshore on numerous expeditions including the Marianas expedition, I commentate via the live streams during dives.
- SOEST Open House, University of Hawaii at Manoa – On October 23rd and 24th, 2015, the School of Ocean & Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) welcomed over 5000 members of the public with the hopes of showcasing the science and research undertaken at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. The Smith and Drazen Labs made a joint effort, with exhibits on whale-fall and wood-fall communities, Antarctic fjords, ocean trenches, the pelagic deep sea and deep-sea mining. Teachers, students, adults and families all all visited our deep-sea menagerie, expressing their awe and getting hands-on action with everything from cookie cutter sharks and bone-eating worms to Antarctic sea spiders and polymetallic nodules. We were proud open the inky blackness of the deep sea to the community in Oahu , but we were also honored to be reminded how lucky we are to be deep-sea biologists and why we picked this profession in the first place.
- Expanding Your Horizons, University of Hawaii at Manoa – Emily Young, Amanda Ziegler and I presented a workshop entitled ‘Journey into the Deep’ during ‘Expanding your Horizons’ at the University of Hawaii at Manoa on April 18th, 2015. ‘Expanding Your Horizons’ is aimed at promoting Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) to girls in grades 6 through 8. The workshop gave around 30 girls the chance to get hands-on experience with deep-sea animals from the Antarctic shelf, wood falls and whale falls, and hydrothermal vents. More about ‘Expanding Your Horizons’ in Hawaii here.
- Nature Lives and Science Uncovered, Natural History Museum, London – One of the best parts of doing my Ph.D. at the Natural History Museum in London was the emphasis that this institution places on outreach and public engagement. There were so many opportunities to interact with the public and tell them about my work. I was able to chat about my work in ‘Nature Live‘ shows and take part in the annual Science Uncovered.
- Outreach in the Bahamas – During a research trip to the Bahamas, we had several schools from the islands of Eleuthera and Spanish Wells come by to learn about how we sample our oceans. The kids and teenagers were given the chance to sample the beach for macrofauna and then look at them under a microscope. They were also able to get hands-on experience with our mini ROV REX. We also did several Nature Lives with the Natural History Museum, London.
- Discover Oceanography, University of Southampton – On numerous occasion, Dr. Leigh Marsh and I, held interactive sessions for children (10yrs old) to learn about life in the deep sea. They got the chance to watch footage about life at hydrothermal vents around the world, after which they got hands-on experience using the mini ROV REX (VideoRay Pro4 HD) off the National Oceanography Centre dock.
Blogs and Newspaper Articles
- Mission Logs during Okeanos Explorer expeditions e.g. What IS That? Stumping the Scientists, Super-cute Deep-sea Cukes
- Deep Sea News – Megafauna and Minerals on the Pacific Abyss
- Real Science at SOEST – Mining, Metals and Megafauna in the Pacific Deep Sea
Oceans in 30 Seconds – I was the scientific consultant on the children’s book ‘Oceans in 30 Seconds‘ published by Ivy Press. Here is a great review of ‘Oceans in 30 Seconds’ by the Guardian newspaper. You can also buy this book here.
My research has been featured in many places but here are a few examples:
- Newspapers: LA Times, Guardian UK, Trinidad Daily Express, Trinidad Guardian, Daily Mail
- Websites: Smithsonian Magazine, Scientific American, Mongabay, The Pulitzer Center, Mother Nature Network, Gizmodo, Live Science, Business Insider, Huffington Post, National Geographic
- TV: BBC, CNN International, CNC3, Africa News Network (ANN7), NHK Japan
- Radio: BBC World Service, ABC Melbourne, ABC Sydney