CONDENSED MATTER & MATERIALS PHYSICS
Department of Physics & Astronomy
University College London
London WC1E 6BT
TEL: +44 (0)20 7679 7144 / FAX: +44 (0)20 7679 7145
ELIZABETH SPREADBURY LECTURE 2013
Physics Colloquium on
Professor Jim Alkhalili
Date: Wednesday 28 November 2012, 16:00 to 17:00
Location: Harrie Massey Lecture Theatre, 25 Gordon Street, London, WC1H 0AY
"Starting from a very traditional academic career worrying about postdoc positions, then lectureships, applying for research grants, publishing papers and choosing conferences to attend, I first dipped my toes in science communication in the early 90s. I have come a long way since then. I will recount some of the triumphs, pitfalls, pleasures and challenges in my work as a full-time academic physicist who has been able to find a balance between university life and science communication in its many forms of public lectures, writing and broadcasting and sitting on various public bodies and committees. This evolution of my career has coincided with a general acceptance of the importance of outreach and science communication by the academic community and beyond as we have moved from public understanding of science to public engagement in science. Oh, and I will recount a few anecdotes and entertaining insider stories about working for the BBC."
Jim Al-Khalili OBE is a professor of physics, author and broadcaster based at the University of Surrey where he also holds a chair in the Public Engagement in Science. As well as teaching undergraduate courses at Surrey since 1992, he is still active in his research area of theoretical nuclear physics and is venturing into the new field of quantum biology. He has also built a reputation as a science communicator and has written a number of popular science books, between them translated into over twenty languages. He is a regular presenter of TV science documentaries, including the Bafta nominated Chemistry: A Volatile History, and presents the weekly Radio 4 programme, The Life Scientific. He is a recipient of the Royal Society Michael Faraday medal and the Institute of Physics Kelvin Medal.