September 2021 | Communicating risk

Communicating risk – such as in these COVID-ridden times – is not straightforward. How we think of risks is influenced by many things: our personal experiences, trust in institutions, what we need, and more. But we can head off many problems by understanding people, how they perceive risk, and what can go wrong.

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Newsletters

Our free monthly newsletter is especially relevant to you if you work in the fields of science and/or natural resource management. Some of our readers responded in a survey about our newsletter:

 

“It’s written in a very clear language and tackles topics of great importance for science communication – there is no other one like this that I know of.”

 

“I love how practical and direct the tips are. I have changed the way I communicate based on your newsletters and have saved some that I refer back to when needed!”

NEWSLETTERS

Writing science simply

March 2021 | Communicating science for outside audiences is about distilling

Scientists sometimes claim that science communicators “dumb down” their ideas and words. But the best communication of science distils the essence of the scientist’s work. Interpretive centres show this clearly, portraying big ideas in few words, excluding most technical language, and embracing different cultural values to reach the widest audience.

In this newsletter, we look at five principles of distilling scientific information.

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July 2019 | Storytelling

Humans are captivated by stories. They foster cooperation, pass on social norms, and honour those who are good at telling stories.

At Econnect, we like to harness the power of a good story in our work. We use elements of storytelling in many different ways: from interviewing people to write case studies of best practice, to developing interpretive information about different topics for visitor centres. We’re currently helping Pacific Islands communicators tell their stories about the Pacific tuna fisheries. Stories aplenty!

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NEWSLETTERS

Making stories visual

May 2020 | Infographics we love

Infographics are great for summarising detailed information in a way that help readers get to the heart of your material very quickly. They are light on text, and rely on appealing graphic design to link elements and sketch out the main story. We’ve put together some of our favourite infographics.

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November 2019 | Presenting science graphically

The thoughtful use of well-designed graphical elements are central to the presentation of science. They need to be accurate, appropriate to the scientific endeavour – and attractive and easy to grasp quickly. Good graphics don’t just reiterate the text: they add an extra dimension to a reader’s understanding of a subject.

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NEWSLETTERS

Planning science communication

September 2021 | Communicating risk

Communicating risk – such as in these COVID-ridden times – is not straightforward. How we think of risks is influenced by many things: our personal experiences, trust in institutions, what we need, and more. But we can head off many problems by understanding people, how they perceive risk, and what can go wrong.

read more

June 2021 | Designing messages

We’ve all had experience of thinking long and hard about how to craft a message, and finding that it misses the mark. It’s difficult to do well! We need to craft different messages for different audiences and media.

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NEWSLETTERS

Telling stories

August 2019 | Emotion and science communication

Good science communication engages the senses. At Econnect, we focus on awakening curiosity, fascination, enthusiasm, and a desire to know in our audiences.

Science communication that leaves audiences feeling confused or bored, or even excluded can be worse than no communication at all. At Econnect we start by discovering what excites our intended audiences.

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August 2017 | Communicating for behaviour change

No matter what area of science or communication you’re in, you’ll likely work on documents or activities that aim to persuade, to change. We offer advice on ways to encourage behaviour change, raising awareness about change, giving people patience and time to change and the sequence of stages people go through to make changes to their behaviours.

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NEWSLETTERS

Editing for clarity

September 2015 | Giving and receiving feedback

We love feedback. How do you get it and give it? Read this month’s newsletter: Using a camera to give feedback on presentations. Feedback from journalists and presenters in media skills workshops. Gaining useful feedback about our work. Editing or reviewing someone’s document: 3 tips.

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August 2013 | Being edited

Writing is such a large and necessary part of what we do at Econnect that, while some of us are experienced at editing, all of us are experienced at being edited.

Editing is intended to save the writer from embarrassment (and, of course, help the reader), but it’s easy to get defensive, especially when the editor goes beyond fixing errors.

Perhaps in the workplace it’s better to think of writing as a collaboration—a process through which both writer and editor hone their skills to jointly create something of excellence—something more than the sum of the parts.

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NEWSLETTERS

Training to communicate

November 2016 | Evaluation

Tips on evaluation – the 5 Ps of evaluation, demonstrating the benefits of science communication, evaluating as you go and using evaluation to refine communication objectives.

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October 2016 | Adapting to change

Econnect has undergone some big changes since our last newsletter – we discuss accepting change, making changes using evidence and communicating the the right messages to facilitate change.

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December 2015 | The value of networking

As Christmas looms, opportunities arise for catching up with people we may not have seen for some time.

It’s easy to knock back an invitation, but take a moment to consider whether you’re knocking back more than just a glass of cheap bubbly and a limp sausage roll.

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NEWSLETTERS

Interpreting natural environments

December 2017 | Engaging people in science issues

This month, we thought about Clever ideas to engage people in science-based issues – particularly ones that encourage us to consider multiple perspectives.
We love to see fascinating activities that engage people in thinking about issues that are important to them, and that could help them make the best decisions about that issue.

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September 2017 | Advancing science communication

Science communication is advancing but it is still a career that quite a few of us have to explain. In this newsletter we define the essential role of a science communicator, discuss the ‘energie.wenden’ exhibit in Munich which encourages people to build their own opinion by providing facts, and give tips for making great screencasts.

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December 2016 | Participating in science

Our December newsletter on Participating in science his theme reflects on our participation in the New Zealand SCANZ conference,
the Australian Government’s recent attention to citizen science and our development of a communication strategy for the Australian Citizen Science Association.

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