From the President: January 2010

This is an interesting time for my first post as the ASC President for 2010.

Our national conference, under Tim Thwaites’ guidance, will start soon and it offers a stimulating and varied program including superb professional development and networking opportunities. Many science communicators have already registered and if you are still making up your mind, I encourage you to join us in Canberra. I’m looking forward to making new acquaintances and meeting many of you whom I’ve known only via email or web postings.

It’s true for me to say that I’ve been an ASC member for more years than I remember. I don’t recall when I first joined but I do recall my regret at not being able to attend the joint PCST-ASC conference in 1996. I made up for that by assisting David Ellyard, who organised the next ASC conference in 2001, by chairing the program development committee.

That conference was held at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney, which was my workplace for 25 years from 1984 to 2008. I had the excitement of working on the project to build the museum and then gained an ever-evolving job as their senior curator of sciences. Besides developing a wide range of science exhibitions and events I was active with National Science Week events and organising committees and in 2006 was one of the founders of the Ultimo Science Festival, a major National Science Week activity. For a few years I also had a small role helping the ASC NSW team who developed and ran the Eureka Prize winning ‘Science in the Pub’ program.

When I consider what I’d like to achieve this year, I look to all the work of previous ASC Presidents and especially to the platform laid by our immediate past president Tim Thwaites. I want to help realise the ASC vision statement which Tim and the National Council drafted last year. This also includes supporting the implementation and growth of the ASC Course Accreditation System. Moving further I’d like to explore greater relationships with Commonwealth and State Chief Scientists and their related offices while continuing to build on relationships with other science communication organisations such the Australian Science Media Centre and the Royal Institution Australia.

The way ahead is neither straight nor level but I believe the role of science communication will grow in today’s information-swamped but comprehension-challenge world. I want the surfers amongst us to help the ASC to catch this wave. I’m looking forward to interesting times and will see you at the conference!

Jesse Shore
National President

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