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The Pub Club (Jan 27): The Mug Club – Sheril Kirshenbaum
January 27 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Our first Mug Club Guest Speaker of 2017 is Sheril Kirshenbaum. Sheril will lead a discussion on “Science Communication.” In an article written in Feb 2014 for CNN: “No, the sun does not revolve around the Earth” Sheril writes: “Every few years, the National Science Foundation releases its new Science and Engineering Indicators, which feature a barrage of seemingly embarrassing statistics that detail just how much Americans don’t know about science. The latest such report, out Friday, has caused a stir by revealing that just 74% of Americans know the Earth revolves around the sun.” Sheril follows with: “Science literacy isn’t remembering a bunch of facts. It’s an appreciation and understanding of the scientific process and the ability to think critically.”
Science is inherently related to every significant challenge of the 21st century some near and dear to AG Schools like MSU, from the changing environment and its impact on things like crop production, water supplies and food security to mental health and energy, yet scientists often are not part of the policy-making process. Sheril will give a brief introduction to her background in science and policy and discuss communicating science to other scientists, the public and policymakers. We need to be prepared to engage with audiences outside of the ivory towers – especially during times when funding is facing increased scrutiny and tighter restrictions. Following this brief introduction, Sheril will work with us to develop our ability to identify and communicate the Big Ideas and Key Points of our research with various audiences.
Sheril is director of The Energy Poll at The University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business. She works to enhance public understanding of science and energy issues and improve communication between scientists, policymakers and the public. She is also executive director of ScienceDebate, a non-profit initiative working toward a presidential debate on science and technology policy. Sheril is also married to previous Coaster Club’r from our fall 2016 “PI Q & A” panel and TPC friend David Lowry.
For more about and from Sheril, please check her website: http://www.sherilkirshenbaum.com/
Diverse Skills targeted: communication & critical evaluation