Tell Us a Story: The Power of Narrativium

By Elf Eldridge 26/08/2011

It has warmed the cockles of my heart recently to see many scientists really pushing the power of storytelling. There have been a few inspiring speeches, a few articles and a TED talk or two – but what I’m really excited about are the upcoming science storytelling competitions running across the country.

"Tell Us a Story" Competition

Firstly, Elizabeth Connor (inaugural recipient of the Prime Minister’s Science Communication Prize) and the Faculty of Science and Engineering at Victoria University have put together a storytelling competition for PostGraduate students. It’s aiming to teach them how to tell stories and create narratives, instead of the usual list of facts and figures we often associate with science talks. They’re holding the finals in Wellington on Monday October 17th at a ‘Special Edition’ of Nerdnite at Bar Bodega – it’s free entry and we should get to see some of the best and brightest new storytellers, so pencil it in your diary! More info at their website here.

Secondly, the Great NZ Mix and Mashup Competition is running and this year the National Library has sponsored a $2000 prize for the best Digital Story. As well as all the great work that come out of this competition, I’m really looking forward to seeing the entries for the story section!

ScienceTeller Festival 2011

Finally, the inaugural ScienceTeller festival is being held in Dunedin from 15th-19th November 2011. This promises some really excellent science stories and workshops from great communicators across the country.

And all of that is just this year – can’t wait to see what pops up for 2012!

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