World Science Festival showcases Brisbane’s appetite for science

wsfb_logoEarlier this year Brisbane opened its doors to some of the greatest minds in science, inviting its resident’s to indulge in
the renowned World Science Festival.

This is the first time that the festival has ever left New York
and thanks to a deal struck by the Queensland Government,
the event will be hosted by the Queensland Museum in
Brisbane for the next 6 years.

Multi-award winning actor, director and author Alan Alda, best known as “Hawkeye” Pierce in the war comedy M*A*S*H, brought ‘Dear Albert’ with him to the festival stage. The reading penned for the stage paid tribute to the life and loves of the infamous Albert Einstein.

Mr Alda is lesser known for his keen enthusiasm and contributions toward the scientific community but, an area he has worked extensively in is science communication, having helped start the Alan Alda Centre for Communication Science which he says has clarified how important science communication is not just for the public but also for the scientists themselves.

“Science is a beautiful, fascinating detective story. And we shouldn’t be denied that story simply because it’s done in a language we don’t understand. We need it not dumbed down, but translated, made vivid, made clear” he said.

The World Science Festival’s ‘Science and Story – Getting it Write’ event gathered foremost writers and thinkers to discuss the importance of communication and to craft stories that bring the vitality and wonder of science to life – on the page, on the stage, and on the screen.

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Photo: World Science Festival ‘Science and Story – Getting it Write’ event March 2016

Award-winning author and critic Ashley Hay took part as a panelist in the Getting it Write event. When asked why it was important for the community to be informed on the scientific world Mrs Hay said that the public needs​ to know because the public are funding this work.

“It is public money so of course the public need to know what is going on and they need to know why this work is important” Mrs Hay said.

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Image: Joy of Museums

“Science underpins health and medicine, we know it underpins technology, agriculture, where we live, how we learn and what we learn”

“We are going to be living in a world that is increasingly defined by these advances and it is science that is going to give us our best chance of knowing what they are doing and what they might do next,” she said.

The success of this festival has put Brisbane on the scientific map and gives Australia an opportunity to showcase our scientific endeavours, encouraging young and old to get involved and to join the conversation.