Tuesday, June 25, 2013

And now for some public outreach: About sex in humans and insects in "Bildningsbyrån" (Swedish Radio, P1)

Posted by Erik Svensson

I think most of us agree that public outreach and popular science is important, but it is easy to forget in the international world of Lund University that there is also a large Swedish audience who mainly listens to Sveriges Radio (SR), and its channel P1, and quite seldom read English scientific litterature (by the way, P1 is my personal favourite radio channel)

Although one does not reach (potentially) as many people in media channels which are restricted to Swedish, the response is usually very good, and it is often very appreciated. Likewise, I think it is important also to give popular science talks in Swedish, e. g. at "Gymnasiedagarna", as there are many swedes who, although they speak English, are not as familiar with the technical language of science. It is important to interact with your local community, as a scientist, and not only internationally, I think. After all, we live in Sweden, and it is the Swedish taxpayers money which are largely funding our research. They deserve to get some information about how their tax money is spent and why research is useful to the society (not necessarily restricting "useful" to economic benefits, of course).

Recently, Jessica Abbott and I were interviewed in the radio programme "Bildningsbyrån" in a series about sexuality. We were both interviewed in our profession as evolutionary biologists, and the interviewer was interested in what inferences that can be drawn from animal studies to understand sexual behaviour in humans. I think it became a nice and balanced interview, which I am certainly not embarrassed over. You can listen to it here, where the programme will be available for a couple of months. Enjoy!

På svenska:

Min kollega och jag blev nyligen intervjuade i radioprogrammet "Bildningsbyrån", som har en serie i sommar som handlar om sex.  Vi intervjuades som evolutionsbiologer och diskussionen handlar bl. a. om vilka paralleller som kan dras (eller inte dras!) mellan insekters sexualbeteenden och människors, samt vad modern evolutionsbiologi säger i detta ämne. Lyssna gärna här, programmet ligger uppe några månader till. 

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