Public engagement in the Department of Life and Environmental Sciences (LES) has been selected for NERC’s Engage – an online platform dedicated to increasing the impact of environmental research by increasing visibility through blogs. Research associate and PhD researcher Katie Thompson talks about how public engagement projects within LES have continued throughout Covid19 and social distancing (read our blog here). Genoveva Esteban and Katie Thompson were organising a ‘Family Science Fair’ for March 2020 when the global pandemic hit, the lockdown was enforced, and the event had to be cancelled. They turned their outreach efforts to the well-established Wessex Portal, an online platform run at LES with daily public engagement. Their festival activities were adapted through the development of a partner page, WildlifeCraftClub, where they have posted over 150 colouring sheets online for the public to use at home. They were delighted when the Linnean Society collaborated with the WidlifeCraftClub and the society are now showcasing weekly drawings from their archives. They plan to continue online public engagement activities with the launch of a new initiative ‘SnapShot Science’, which will virtually showcase departmental research. Watch this space!
(Images: Atlantic Salmon to celebrate International Year of the Salmon; Heliozoon (a single-celled organism); African elephant; Magnolia flower)