PCST Network

Public Communication of Science and Technology


Tracking the careers of science communication postgraduates

Padraig Murphy  

In recent times, the PCST network has increased its dedication and support to young researchers, following their pathways into various employment sectors that involve science communication. This proposed panel will pull these global experiences together. Two proposed papers on the panel include: 'The harder you work, the luckier you get: : Reflections on life after a science communication postgraduate programme at UWE, Bristol' from Clare Wilkinson, Associate Professor in Science Communication at University of West England, Bristol. Organised in conjunction with UWE's Science Communication Unit, their MSc programme team views employment after graduation as a partnership, providing the resources, networks and knowledge, enabling students to then locate employment. A 2013 survey demonstrated 88% of graduates working in science communication. This paper will draw on observations from graduate surveys, work with employers and LinkedIn community. 'Science Communication PhDs in work and practice' Maarten van der Sanden, assistant professor in Science Communication at Delft University of Technology van Sanden has been involved in research and training in the area of PhD-to-employment for science communicators. Interactions between research and practice are explored. He proposes that the PCST network, in which practitioners and academics co-exist, might support or enhance possibilities for testing in practice or research-sabbaticals for practitioners in a global network. The panel will also reflect on a new survey of graduates carried out by P Murphy, Dublin City University and Gema Revuelta, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona. We will seek 2-3 more papers in an open call, outside of Europe, on projects where science communication postgraduates have been tracked into research and industry. We expect this session to be important for anyone involved in connecting education to practice, and we propose that the session, if approved, links to a similar session on 'Training' proposed by Prof Alex Gerber of Rhine-Waal.

A copy of the full paper has not yet been submitted.