As 2013 starts to accelerate, I’m noticing that these are increasingly interesting times to be involved in the wide world of science communication. Doubly so if you’re a member of the ASC.
In 2012 the association was regularly invited to confer with other science and science communication related bodies, and if the first two months of 2013 are anything to go by, this is just going to continue. I take this as a sign of a growing ASC public profile, and also of an increasing awareness ‘out there’ of science communication more broadly. It also highlights to me that professionalising our organisation has never been more timely.
On that, we have confirmed and installed our two VPs now and have a clearer idea of their main portfolios (though the names of these may still need a tweak). Will Grant has agreed to take the lead on running the processes that will lead us down the professionalization road. I was tempted to call his portfolio VP (Black Ops), but something more like “Charter and membership” will probably better provide the necessary gravitas the process and position warrants.
Claire Harris has confirmed she will take on the other VP position overseeing communication and marketing, a role for which she has a huge amount experience, drive and commitment. I’m delighted these two fine people agreed to step up: this will be great for us all!
Moving to my other ASC hobby-horse, one of my missions as president is to get the ASC more firmly entrenched in the public arena as an organisation. We have many high profile members, but the organisation itself is not yet the ‘go to’ place for sci comm related mattes that I suspect it could be.
To help realise this, I’d like to ask all of you to keep your eyes open for current or impending issues you think might be suitable grist for media releases and comment from the ASC. If you see anything, please send me a heads-up, a link, or a short polemic. Of course I can’t promise that the things people send through will automatically go out under the ASC moniker: some matters will be more suitable than others. But the more material and ideas you send, the more opportunities we will have to positively embed the ASC in minds of those beyond the science communication community.
Onward, upward and outward!
Dr Rod Lamberts
Australian Science Communicators