Research Communicator - January 2010
Euroscience Media Awards 2010
The Euroscience Media Awards in 2010 follow the pattern of the successful 2009 awards. There are five awards for work that promotes better European media coverage of research. The awards will be made annually:
- a life-time award to research journalism, provided by the Euroscience Stiftung
- the two best young journalists, provided by the Euroscience Stiftung
- the best popular TV programme covering European research, provided by Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research & Development - Europe, a division of Janssen Pharmaceutica NV
- the best PR work on behalf of European research, provided by AlphaGalileo Foundation
Euroscience Stiftung has been making the journalism awards for several years. The 2010 awards will be the second year that the TV and PR awards will be made.
The journalism awards are non-competitive and will be made by Euroscience Stiftung in consultation with the European Union of Science Journalists Associations (EUSJA). The TV and PR awards are competitive and entry forms are here.
Other funders for extra awards will be welcome.
AlphaGalileo Research Media Workshops Spring 2010
Two practical workshops will take place on 23 and 24 February 2010. The first one, ‘Research, Media and Making your point', is an introduction to effective communication through the media for researchers and will focus on how academic organisations can improve their public profile.
The second one, ‘Getting the Message Out: Press Officer Skills', is an introduction to writing and posting effective research news releases for press officers, and will show how to make research engaging for public audiences and key decision makers.
For more information and booking, please see our Media Training page.
Success stories: University of Gdansk - celebrating their 40th anniversary
"The role of press officer in such a big university as Gdansk (Uniwersytet Gdanski) is very complicated and demanding, with so many students and scientists", explains Beata Czechowska-Derkacz. "Of course, I need to be in constant contact with people from public relations departments and journalists from TV Gdansk, Radio Gdansk, and newspapers like Dziennik Balticki and Gazeta Wyborcza. I need to be in touch with the news from the scientific world and especially to know what is going on in other European universities, colleges and institutes. AlphaGalileo is of great help not only for our PR goals, by distributing our news and reaching the international media, but also as a source to keep up to date about the latest scientific developments in the world".
"A great challenge for me is the lack of time to coordinate the flow of information about the events here, especially now when we are celebrating the 40-th anniversary of University of Gdansk".
Beata Czechowska-Derkacz is a University of Gdansk's Press Officer. She has graduated in Polish Philology at the university and is doing an MBA in Philology. She used to work as teacher, editor in chief of an educational printing house and a journalist with 10-years of experience.
Hits Parade - AlphaGalileo Top 5
Archaeology news always attract a lot of attention, and last month we had three examples in our Top 5. An ancient cemetery was discovered in a coral reef in Vanuatu, representing the oldest and biggest skeleton find ever in the Pacific Ocean. Also, a group of experts from the University of Tübingen has received a grant to explore the hieroglyphic inscriptions of Egyptian temples dating to the Hellenistic and Roman periods. And the spotting of a handful of iron beads lead to the discovery of Scandinavia's oldest and most complex group of iron forges. Other story that made it to the top 5 tell us about a new technique to detect a protein process involved in a range of diseases like Alzheimer, diabetes or cancer, and could be used to detect these. And finally, with 2.5 million tones of chocolate products consumed in the EU in 2007, a testing method to detect chocolate fraud is being adopted internationally. Read the full stories here:
1. Ancient Pacific islanders brought to light - The University of Stavanger - 11/12/2009
2. The Temple as Canon of Egypt's Religious Literature: A New Long-term research Project at the University of Tübingen - Universitaet Tuebingen - 07/12/2009
3. New technique detects proteins that make us age - University of Bath - 15/12/2009
4. JRC method to detect chocolate fraud becomes an international standard - European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC) - 04/12/2009
5. Handful of iron beads offer clues to solve mystery - The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) - 28/12/2009
Staff picks - Earth's atmosphere came from outer space, find scientists
Prof Chris Ballentine of The University of Manchester, said: "Many people have seen artist's impressions of the primordial Earth with huge volcanoes in the background spewing gas to form the atmosphere. We will now have to redraw this picture." - Why is that? Find out here
And a Christmas selection...
Your Christmas tree has seven times more DNA than you do - time to map it
You will never look at your Christmas tree in the same way after reading this press release from our Swedish Contributor Expertanswer. This is not known, but the spruce or the pine that has brightened your Christmas Eve has seven times as much DNA as a human cell does! Until now scientists have not dared to tackle a mapping of the complete genome of coniferous trees because of their enormous amount of DNA. But now, a Swedish research team is going to take on this huge challenge with the aid of a grant of SEK 75 million from the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation. Read here the full release
Santa Claus at risk
Due to an "unhealthy lifestyle, unreasonable working conditions, and then the stress of having to deliver 152 million Christmas gifts in 24 hours". At the University of Gothenburg, they like joking, as they say themselves, so they have analysed a series of factors: "Santa's very strenuous living conditions give us reason to question his very existence. But then again, that depends on what you believe in: science or Santa Claus?" Read it here...
The Savvy User's Corner
Did you know...
... that a good title is what hooks up the reader? Every month we receive hundreds of press releases; we offer a couple of good practices we have learned from our contributors' experience to increase the coverage of your news:
Shorter is better. Your title should not be too long - whenever it's possible, keep it around 80 characters
Titles need to be factual but at the same time hook up the reader. Do not add information such as the nationality of the researchers, the edition of the festival or your organisation's name unless it is part of the news or adds an interesting point. You want the readers to remember these details, but first they need to be interested in your item. Add this information in the first paragraph or in some visible part of the text instead.
If you have any question about this or any other procedure, please contact the team.
Finally, you can now follow us in Twitter and join our group or become a fan of AlphaGalileo in Facebook.
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