Everyone likes a story. Stories have a uniquely captivating effect on the mind that transcends the boundaries of language and culture; if two people from opposite sides of the world read the same story translated into completely different languages, their brains undergo the same patterns of activity as they visualise the story and are carried through its emotional ups and downs. Research, on the other hand, operates in a language that is far from universal. It’s a major barrier to communication between researchers and the public, making people feel shut out from vital discussions. If we are to tackle global issues like climate change, we need ways to break down these barriers and engage people in a language they understand.
Health is about much more than avoiding disease and living long lives – it’s about feeling well in mind and body, feeling safe, being part of a community and having things to look forward to.
Chair of the NERC Impact Awards 2018 shortlisting and judging panels Dr Peter Costigan feeds back on this year’s applications with insights from the panels on how to best represent your impact in case studies.
It’s been a pleasure to chair the NERC Impact Awards shortlisting and judging panels over the past few months. I know that the panel members have been inspired by the varied and impressive ways that environmental science contributes to our quality of life and economy.