My third year research project involved the utilisation of blogs as a platform for science communication. I studied ground spider assemblages on campus with the aim to engage the public with a sometimes misunderstood or mistreated group of organisms. After research into the species found on campus I produced blogs on the more common species with others on evolution and folklore. The blogs I produced on these topics can be found here: http://blogs.reading.ac.uk/whiteknightsbiodiversity/author/torinclarke/. I thoroughly enjoyed making them and have developed the valuable skill of being able to transform scientific ideas and data into that which people want to read about, in other words, popular science.
I will surely continue to use this skill in my future career whether in research, science communication and journalism or something completely different. Additionally I have gained insight into the importance of online identity and how to strengthen and adapt it. I have also had a grounding in the rules regarding copyright as well as the ability to network your online identity. I believe therefore that the project has enabled me to become a more competitive employee for the Web 2.0 environment.
The ability to sell your ideas and market your skills, and ultimately engage with people, is a key element in helping to draw attention to and educate people about things they might not yet know they are passionate about.
By exposing the public to a broader range of communication techniques science is more likely to become accessible and applicable. The conservationist within me hopes that people will then start to act upon it.