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Science in the Media

Hire Intelligence LSE Literary Festival event

Date: Wednesday 29 February 2012 
Time: 5.15-6.45pm
Venue:  Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building
Speakers: Professor Jim Al-Khalili, Professor Pedro Ferreira, Professor Elaine Fox, Mark Henderson
Chair: Professor George Gaskell

Media reporting of the sciences can shape public opinion. While it may be insightful and revelatory, it can also be misleading and sensationalist, even irresponsible. This distinguished panel will examine the positives and negatives of the media's role in science communication.


Jim Al-Khalili is a British scientist, author and broadcaster. He is a professor of physics at the University of Surrey where he also holds a chair in the public engagement in science. He is a vice president and trustee of the British Science Association and holds an EPSRC Senior Media Fellowship.

Pedro Ferreira is a professor of Astrophysics at the University of Oxford and a fellow and tutor in Physics at Oriel College, Oxford.  His first book, State of the Universe, was published in 2006, and he is currently working on a popular history of Einstein's theory of General Relativity, to be published in 2013.  He has written for Nature, Science, New Scientist, Physics World, Physics Today, Scientific American, Sky at Night, CERN Courier, BBC Focus and The Guardian.

Elaine Fox is professor of psychology and cognitive neuroscience at the University of Essex and currently visiting fellow at Magdalen College, Oxford.  She is one of the world's leading experimental psychologists.  Her research is dedicated to uncovering the mysteries of how the human brain unconciously analyses information.  She is current writing about the discovery of specific genes that tip people towards either a pessemistic or optimistic mindset, which in turn are linked to vulnerability and resilience.  Rainy Brain, Sunny Brain will be published in Spring 2012.

Mark Henderson is Head of Communications at the Wellcome Trust and former Science Editor of The Times.  His first book, 50 Genetics Ideas You Really Need to Know was published by Quercus in 2009. His second book, The Geek Manifesto, which explores the relationship between science and politics, will be published by Bantam Press in May 2012.

This event is supported by the Hire Intelligence speakers' agency.

Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #lselitfest


A podcast of this event is available to download from Science in the Media.

Podcasts and videos of many LSE events can be found at the LSE Public Lectures and Events: podcasts and videos channel.

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This event has been certified for CPD purposes by the CPD Certification Service. Self-Assessment Record forms will be made available for delegates wishing to record further learning and knowledge enhancement for Continuing Personal and Professional Development (CPD) purposes. For delegates who wish to obtain a CPD Certificate of Attendance, it is the responsibility of delegates to register their details with a LSE steward at the end of the event and as of 1 September 2014 a certificate will be sent within 28 days of the date of the event attended by the CPD Certification Service.  If a delegate fails to register their details at the event, it will not prove possible to issue a certificate. (For queries relating to CPD Certificates of attendance after a request please phone 0208 840 4383 or email info@cpduk.co.uk).