By Sarah-Jane O'Connor 09/09/2020


Nau mai, haere mai – welcome to our newest addition to Sciblogs: Tuhia ki te rangi.

Over the eleven years Sciblogs has been operating, the face of science communication has changed dramatically. Where a decade ago there was a burgeoning number of scientists and other experts looking to stretch their wings in science blogging, now there is a growing establishment of science communication as a career path independent from research.

The University of Otago’s Centre for Science Communication offers a Masters in Science Communication in which students can specialise in creative nonfiction writing or science and natural history filmmaking.

At Victoria University of Wellington’s Centre for Science in Society students can minor in science communication or take Masters-level courses. From 2020, students can now opt to undertake a Bachelor of Communications or Bachelor of Science with a major in science communication: the first of its kind in New Zealand.

Then across journalism schools and science faculties, we know there are often keen students who want to write about science. The students coming through these programmes need a space to showcase their work, so we’ve created Tuhia ki te rangi – its name comes from a whakataukī:

Tuhia ki te rangi

Tuhia ki te whenua

Tuhia ki te ngā kau

Write it in the sky

Write it in the land

Write it in the heart of the people

To me, this whakataukī speaks to the essence of science communication, and good communication in general: we will be successful when we speak to people’s hearts.

Here we also want to give students an opportunity to ‘write it in the sky’ as a way of communicating science to others, learning from the process and building the confidence and experience to put their training into practice.

Our banner image depicts Māhutonga – the Southern Cross – an important constellation for navigation in our part of the world: we hope by showcasing student work here we will help them find their way in their studies and future careers.

We welcome submissions from students studying at New Zealand tertiary institutes, including science communication, journalism, or science students who wish to try their hand at writing and with the support of their lecturers or course coordinators. We are also open to audio or visual stories accompanied by a written summary or story.

We hope you will enjoy the contributions from our up and coming science communicators.

Ngā mihi to Kahu Hotere – Royal Society Te Apārangi Director – Māori – for guidance on choosing the name for this new blog.