"Harry Potter and the Scientist's Words"

"Harry Potter and the Scientist's Words"

"Harry Potter and the Scientist's Words"

Alexandra Lockwood

April 10, 2018

Einstein: "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough."

Alexandra Lockwood is the science communications lead for the James Webb Space Telescope at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STSCI). 

Science communication fundamentals as explained by Lockwood:

  • Everytime you talk about science, you are communicating science.
  • As a scientist, it is your duty and privilege to share your knowledge.
  • Communicating science clearly can result in obtaining highly sought-after funding. 
  • Explain the reason why your science matters, and why it is interesting.
  • Your medium for communication depends upon your audience.
  • Tell a story:  have a storyline, engage your audience, keep it simple, unexpected, concrete, credible, and emotional
  • Key elements when talking to the media:  eye contact, avoid jargon, visuals, explain visuals, ask questions to ensure  your message has been understood, create a personal connection, employ understandable analogies.
  • Break down your message to a level understandable by most people.
  • Always remember to address the who, what, where, why, when, and how questions.
  • Have soundbites prepared in advance.

You can watch Lockwood's presentation on YouTube.