This article is a guest submission by Elodie Chabrol, the international director of Pint of Science.
Pint of Science brings scientists to discuss their latest research with an interested public, during three nights every May. The festival is organised by a grass-roots community across the world.
The history of Pint of Science
Pint of Science was born in 2012 when post-doctoral researchers Praveen Paul and Michael Motskin organised an event that brought people affected by neurodegenerative diseases into their labs to see the research being carried out there. The guests were fascinated by the visit. Inspired by this event, Paul and Motskin thought that, if people want to come to labs to meet scientists, why not bring scientists to people?
The first edition of Pint of Science took place in the UK in London, Oxford and Cambridge and was organised mostly by scientists with a passion for sharing science. It was a brilliant success and the following year the festival expanded to France, USA, Switzerland, Ireland and Australia. Nowadays the festival is a successful global initiative and every year more countries are added thanks to volunteers starting local festivals. In May 2019, the festival was held in 400 cities spread in 24 countries attracting 140 000 attendees. That edition was organised by around 3000 volunteers across the globe.
Topics covered by Pint of Science
Pint of Science events broadly fall into the following topics:
- Beautiful Mind – neuroscience, psychology and psychiatry
- Atoms to Galaxies – physics, chemistry, maths, astronomy
- Our Body – medicine, human biology, health
- Planet Earth – geosciences, plant sciences, zoology
- Tech Me Out – biotechnology, robotics, computers
- Our Society – law, history, politics, policy, languages
Who can get involved ?
Anyone with an interest in science can be involved in the organisation of the annual festival. If you’re a scientist and want to share your work at the next Pint of Science festival, contact your local organisation.
Pint of Science are a grassroots non-profit organisation and ticket costs were introduced in some countries to ensure that the events could be sustainable. In addition to volunteers, Pint of Science relies on ticket money, donations, sponsors, and the universities and institutions involved. The global Pint of Science festival takes place in May each year. Check the website to find out when and where the next events are.
Find out more
- Paul P, Motskin M. Engaging the public with your research. Trends in Immunology. 2016 Apr 1;37(4):268–71. doi: 10.1016/j.it.2016.02.007
- Tan SZK, Perucho JAU. Bringing science to bars: a strategy for effective science communication. Science Communication. 2018 Dec 1;40(6):819–26. doi:10.1177/1075547018808298
- Find out more on Twitter or Instagram
Image credit: Colour-altered image of an original by Simon Dismore. Via Wikimedia Commons.
Elodie Chabrol is the international director of Pint of Science, as well as the founder and director of the French branch of the organisation. She considers herself a Pint of Science “fossil”, having been involved from the very beginning.