Welcome to the QUEST podcast, a series of conversations with leading science communication professionals around Europe.
We learn about the challenges and current trends that impact their work, and hear their advice on how other science communicators can improve the effectiveness of their communication activities. Over the course of the six episodes, we focus in particular on views from female science researchers and specialist science and technology journalists.
During the pandemic scientists and health professionals have had a crucial role in supporting public understanding of vaccine development and safety. This episode of our podcast discusses how communication about vaccines can be delivered effectively.
Levels of vaccine hesitancy in some European countries during the Covid-19 pandemic have been worryingly high, and problems with vaccine supply chains, along with a rare medical outcome associated with certain vaccines, have also damaged public confidence. This episode looks at the issue of communication about vaccines, how effective it is, and how to best tackle sometimes understandable and deep-seated concerns about vaccine safety.
The COVID-19 Vaccine Communication Handbook: https://hackmd.io/@scibehC19vax/home
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In this episode
Dr Dawn Holford, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Department of Psychology, University of Essex, UK
Dr Dawn Holford is a behavioural science researcher and current SeNSS-ESRC Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Essex. She studies the psychology of communication and decision-making. She is part of the SciBeh initiative, which seeks to improve knowledge consolidation and dissemination in the COVID-19 crisis, and is one of the lead authors of the COVID-19 Communication Handbook.
Dr Ann Robinson, Doctor and Health Journalist, UK
Dr Ann Robinson is a UK primary care doctor and health journalist. She is a regular contributor on health issues for BBC World Service’s Health Check programme, and writes on medical issues for the Guardian newspaper. She also sits on the Research Ethics Committee of England’s NHS (National Health Service) and is a trustee of the Anthony Nolan blood cancer charity. She is committed to furthering accurate and responsible science and health journalism.
Podcast production team
Host: Barbara Schofield
Barbara worked as a reporter, producer and editor in BBC broadcast newsrooms and in features production for 15 years before moving into academic life at City, University of London. She was until recently Programme Director of Undergraduate Journalism at City, while also working on the Erasmus+ INSPIRE project to encourage inclusivity in higher education through training in media skills. She has been active on several other EU-funded partnership projects including MicroEuropa and the Global Environmental Journalism Training Initiative (GEJI). As Research Officer on the QUEST project she has devised an updated curriculum for MA Science Journalism programmes, and a Toolkit to encourage accurate and effective science journalism – available in May 2021.
Producer: Atina Dimitrova
Atina is a City, University of London alumna who did a degree in Journalism. She did her MA in International Relations at King’s College London. Atina is working as MailOnline’s UK social media assistant. She has work experience across a range of media outlets such as The Guardian, The Times and The Sunday Times Magazine. She has also worked as a hub assistant at the Election Broadcast Hub, BBC Elstree Centre during the 2018 Local Election programme and the 2017 General Election programme.