Doesn’t the weather just ruin everything?

Evolution, synthetic biology and the story of hip hop by Dr Adam Rutherford, the hotly anticipated talk scheduled at NEPG Research Conference.

Are you excited for some hip hop? Well I was!

After settling down 2 rows from the front, the lights dimmed and we waited for the talk. A woman approached the microphone and announced that St Jude had stranded Dr Rutherford in Kings Cross Station in London!

So now we have a dilemma. Stuck at the front, do we walk out, or sit through the replacement? We decide to stick it out.

The speaker is an engagement officer, with a talk about ownership. She began with her career working in Northumberland (my home county) cultural development. Apparently trying to get the residents of Ashington to take an interest in anything but miner’s brass bands was near impossible!

But the talk moved on to discuss the importance of researchers actively engaging the public in their work. Most research is funded by PUBLIC money, so isn’t it important that the public take ownership of the research, as in reality it’s their research too?

But it’s not as simple as that. There isn’t a big crowd of people anxiously waiting for the latest papers, but as researchers we should have a responsibility to engage the public so that it benefits society.

So the weather may have ruined my hip hop to biology experience, but I left feeling inspired, and I hope others did too.

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