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Am I Making Myself Clear?: A Scientist's Guide to Talking to the Public
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Am I Making Myself Clear?: A Scientist's Guide to Talking to the Public

3.42  ·  Rating Details ·  50 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
Urging scientists to speak up and be heard in current debates, Cornelia Dean offers advice on public speaking, media relations and popular science writing.
Hardcover, 274 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by Harvard University Press (first published 2009)
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John
Mar 21, 2012 John rated it it was amazing
A Concise Guide on the Art of Public Communication for Scientists and Journalists

Scientists must learn to become better communicators, argues former New York Times science editor Cornelia Dean in her surprisingly terse, but most lucid, “am I making myself clear? A Scientist’s Guide to Talking to the Public”. However, unlike several recently published books on this very subject, Dean not only extols scientists to become better communicators, but she also demonstrates how, giving pointers on every
...more
Evan Snyder
Jan 12, 2010 Evan Snyder rated it it was ok
I jumped around through this book - it was interesting for me to peruse through a bit, but not working in journalism nor being a scientist courted by journalists, it went into far more depth than relevant to me. However, it did provide some ideas that I will keep in mind when considering science PR and I would recommend science writers and frequently interviewed scientists read this book or something like it to help foster a mutual understanding between the two parties and help each get what the ...more
Anna
Mar 05, 2012 Anna rated it it was ok
Shelves: science-edu-work
Besides the multiple mentions of the NY Times that funded the writer, the book does show what journalists wants to hear from a scientist. Unfortunately all the points the author makes could have been made in a couple of chapters. It definitely won't appeal to a scientist with standard training and no intermediate exposure to speaking to the general pubic and this. There are better books on this topic.
Melissa
Apr 03, 2013 Melissa rated it really liked it
This book provides straight-forward advice for scientists and engineers to communicate their research in a way for the general public to understand, which is important given how much policy should and must be based on science and technology but is based on social opinion instead. I think I just summed up the summary on the book cover... no false advertising here.
Dan
Jul 29, 2010 Dan rated it really liked it
Shelves: science, self-help
This is quite a good handbook for, guess what, scientists who need or want to talk to the general public in any number of ways. I found it very informative and will most likely refer to it if I ever end up in that situation.
D Lemon
D Lemon rated it it was ok
Jan 22, 2016
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Cynthia Dickson
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Nov 28, 2014
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Beckydham
Oct 09, 2009 Beckydham rated it liked it
Not too surprising and/or exciting, but full of straightforward advice.
Becky
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Sep 04, 2011
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“Though Americans have tremendous respect for the ability of engineers and scientists to solve important problems and answer important questions, polls indicate many of us worry that technology moves too fast, and that its benefits blind us to important spiritual concerns.” 0 likes
“In an editorial, the journal Nature warned that one of the dangers of winning the Nobel Prize is that people attempt to enlist you for all sorts of causes.' It particularly cited Scientists and Engineers for America and its opposition to Bush science policies, though "there is little doubt that US federal science has suffered under Bush," the editors wrote. By engaging in partisan behavior, the journal warned, scientists risk "seeming to be self-interested, grant-obsessed, and out of touch."
Actually, I think the reverse is true. It is remaining at the bench when times call for action that defines researchers as self-obsessed. As Burton Richter, a Stanford
physicist, Nobel laureate, and founder and board member of SEA wrote in response to the Nature editorial, the organization's aim "is to make available to society at large the evidence-based science relating to critical issues facing us all." He added, "We hope both to draw attention to underappreciated science issues and provide the advocacy necessary to get things done-not along party-political lines but scientifically."4”
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