Spotlight on science

As the summer draws to a close, so too does festival season. Rain ponchos, muddy wellies and cans of beer are all music festival staples. Science, on the other hand, probably isn’t what springs to mind when festivals are mentioned. But, Latitude, Glastonbury, Green Man, Bluedot, Camp Bestival and Chagstock are just some of the leading music events bringing science outreach to a festival stage.

By Leah Elston-Thompson, senior account executive

Actually, science is more common at festivals than you might think. Womad, in Wiltshire, has hosted a physics pavilion for the last three years, attended by over 6,000 visitors in 2018.

Science on stage
Because of the diverse audience attending festivals, communicators have a difficult job making complex topics understandable and interesting for everyone there. Professor Alice Roberts, writer, broadcaster and professor of public engagement in science at the University of Birmingham, said in an interview with the BBC, "It is about being brave and not dumbing down, getting the right balance of being accessible but tackling some complex issues. Create a story line that brings in the concepts".

From Roberts’ quote, we can infer that pitching at the right level for your audience, telling the right story and delivering it in an interesting, passionate way are essential for good science communication. Outside of festivals, PR and marketing teams can work with businesses and universities to share news and views from organisations, following the same principle. Sharing the expertise of scientists and engineers in the right way, can inspire more young people into STEM and encourage industry collaboration.

As a technical PR specialist, Stone Junction helps businesses and their scientists, engineers and technologists, to communicate complex messages to their audiences. You can see an example of an education PR campaign we’ve worked on to inspire the engineers of the future here.

Using content marketing, we can make the wider industry aware of how your business is helping to change the workforce of the future, as well furthering the conversation on industry trends. We can even help you to communicate your message on stage, with our trade show speaker opportunities service.

Though we’re a way away from science stages becoming a festival staple, their popularity is increasing. Hopefully, this trend will extend to more festivals and perhaps different types of event – I know I’d love to see David Attenborough headline Glastonbury.

Leah Elston-Thompson

Stone Junction is a cool technical PR agency based in Stafford. We work for all sorts of businesses, with a particular focus on technology, technical and engineering companies. We like being sent cake and biscuits by clients, journalists and prospects.

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