Opportunities Calendar

Could you help run Edinburgh Cafe Scientifique?
Jan 31 – Feb 25 all-day

Renewed call for volunteers! Could you help run Edinburgh Cafe Scientifique?

Ulrike Knies-Bamforth is looking for someone to help her run Edinburgh Cafe Scientifique. She needs one (or more!) people to help her advertise the group’s events through social media and other channels. Depending on your interests, you could also help with booking speakers and venues. This is a great opportunity to gain experience of running a series of public engagement events for adults!

Want to get involved?


Meanwhile, you can find out more on the Edinburgh Cafe Scientifique Facebook page.

What is Cafe Scientifique?

Cafe Scientifique is an open and informal forum for the public discussion of science and engineering! The cafe is committed to encouraging public engagement with science and engineering by hosting monthly Cafes in which expert speakers are discussing timely topics with an audience of non-specialists.

What happens at a Café Scientifique event?

The session begins with our guest speaker giving a 30-45minute talk about the subject. The key here is that it is informal. That means no need for PowerPoint or any visual aides, just the speaker addressing the issue. There is then a short break to allow glasses to be refilled, followed by discussion about the topic, initially taking form of a Q&A session directed at the speaker.

Why Have Café Scientifique?

Public engagement with science is an important issue as the lay communities’ understanding of topical science exerts strong influence over its boundaries and uses.
One only has to recall the MMR scandal in recent years to see how important the lay community is in the advancement and implementation of modern science, and how vital it is that we are all reliably informed.

Who attends?

Due to the nature of Café Scientifique our attendees come from all walks of life, all sharing a common interest in science.

Ok, so when is it on?

The café runs on the second Monday (occasionally alternative Mondays) of the month at the Filmhouse bar (Lothian road), starting at 8.30.

How much does it cost?

FREE! (although we welcome donations)

Hope to see you there!

Communications and Policy Engagement Officer (Centre on Constitutional Change) | Vacancy @ University of Edinburgh
Feb 13 all-day

Ref. 042431

You will lead the communications and policy engagement activities of the Centre on Constitutional Change (CCC), developing and implementing a strategy to ensure maximum impact and uptake of the Centre’s research and creating and identifying opportunities to promote the Centre’s expertise to a broad range of audiences.

You will have hands-on experience in media, communications, policy engagement, public affairs or applied research, and knowledge of constitutional politics in the UK.

This full time (35 hours per week), fixed term post is available until 30 September 2020.

Salary: £32,548 – £38,833 per annum.

Closing date: 5pm (GMT) Tuesday 13th February 2018

Register to compete in the FameLab Edinburgh heat! @ Edinburgh Napier University
Feb 14 @ 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Registration to compete is via the FameLab UK website ONLY. Please register separately for training using the links given below.

Could you effectively communicate a science, engineering or technology concept in just three minutes? No slides are allowed – you have just your wits and your props. If you’re aged 21 or over, register for FameLab UK now!

Why take part?

FameLab is a great way to improve your science communication skills. The free training, the camaraderie with other performers and the feedback from professional judges all play a part. It’s also fun! Oh, and did we mention there are prizes?

What’s the process?

Step 1: Regional training

Step 2: Regional heat (Edinburgh – 14th Feb; Glasgow – 20th Feb; Dundee tbc)

Step 3: Scottish final (Edinburgh – 10th March) – this must be a different presentation to the regional heat

Step 4: UK Masterclass training weekend (early April 2018 in England, date tbc)

Step 5: UK Final (Science Museum, London, 25th April 2018)

You compete at each stage of the process, so only some people make it through to the next stage each time.

Am I eligible?

  • You cannot already be a professional science communicator or promoter
  • You must be aged 21 or over
  • You must be studying or working in science, engineering, technology, medicine or mathematics (not necessarily in a university – teachers and industry professionals also take part)
  • More on eligibility here

What are the rules?

  • You have 3 minutes
  • You cannot use any sort of electronic presentation or recording
  • You can only use props you can carry on stage yourself
  • You need a different presentation if you make it to the regional final
  • More on the rules here

2017 Scottish FameLab finalists at the National Museum of Scotland

Looks great! How do I take part?

Please register to compete using the FameLab UK website. This is the only way to register to compete.

There may be additional registrations required for the training to accompany the competition. This training is run by local organisers (and is optional) which is why you need to register separately.

Can I spectate?

It will be possible to spectate at the Scottish final on 10th March. A booking link will be available shortly. Please do come and support our competitors!

Dr Bunhead’s Improv Explosions
Feb 15 @ 2:48 pm


SciProv needs you! Dr Bunhead (from TV’s Brainiac) and a team of crack comedy improvisers are looking for enthusiastic and talkative researchers to be the guest stars on Dr Bunhead’s Improvised Explosions. We turn your expertise into improvised scenes. Together, with the audience involvement, we find the theatre in your thesis and separate the reality from the ridiculous.

This is a fresh genre, this is improvised live science comedy (SciProv), this is ; pulling in new audiences. Think Who’s Line Is It Anyway? meets The Graham Norton Show and stuff them both into a blender with a dash of The Open University.

Target Audience:  Adults

Who Gets Involved: Researchers who want to share their passion with everyday folk. All abilities and all disciplines welcome… not just jolly scientists! We want passionate people with a story to tell. NO funny bones needed! Just bring your ideas and your enthusiasm. We support the hell out of you to make you the star of the night. Any researcher looking for a gentle and supportive introduction to public engagement should apply.

What will I Do? You do 10 minutes in the spotlight as an interview or your own presentation, depending on your preference. We will playfully get to know you and your research so the audience sees the person behind the PhD. You meet the team and have a chat, we explain the set up and support you all the way to have a great evening bringing your research to kind and curious audiences.

Timescale: Shows happen once or twice a month at comedy venues such as The Monkey Barrel.

Benefits: This is a great way to safely dip your toe in to the wider world of public engagement. This friendly event is an ideal springboard into more exposed performances such as Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas or Bright Club. The material generated in this event may also serve to illustrate comedic and metaphorical avenues of exploration for the speaker.

To Find out more:  Email us at tom@bunhead.com

To get involved: email the following details to tom@bunhead.com

your suggested talk/performance title;

a summary of the content (50 words max).

CRUK Research Engagement Manager | Vacancy @ Edinburgh
Feb 18 all-day

Are you a creative and driven individual looking to develop your career and make a difference?                                                        

Cancer Research UK’s Research Engagement team brings to life our life-saving research in communities across the UK, encouraging people to join us in the fight to beat cancer. We need a Research Engagement

Manager in Edinburgh who will engage with local people and…

  • Plan and deliver a programme of local engagement activity, from lab visits and open days for the general public to creative cultural partnership events and bespoke research interactions for high-value CRUK supporters
  • Proactively raise the profile of Cancer Research UK’s brand within the Centre and in the locality
  • Raise the Centre’s profile locally by planning and delivering an engaging programme of external communications to key audiences
  • Join the world’s largest charity dedicated to beating cancer through research

Beating cancer is a real challenge. Here at Cancer Research UK we have 3,500 talented people who are passionate about achieving this vision and thrive in our complex, diverse and dynamic environment.

 You can help us save millions of lives through…

  • Strong presentation skills and experience of presenting information to lay audiences and senior management
  • Strong planning and organisational skills; event management experience an advantage
  • Experience of working and delivering with a high level of autonomy
  • Experience of building strong, productive relationships with diverse audiences
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills and the ability to find creative ways to engage and inspire people with our life-saving research
  • Your enthusiasm for beating cancer through research, which will encourage others to join us

Our passion, determination and ambition lead us to set ourselves more and more challenging targets. This means you’ll be a self-starter with the ability to hit the ground running and thrive in a complex environment. If you can do all this and more, you’ll enjoy a great career as we work hard to beat cancer – together.

Further information on the webpages linked above.

Soapbox Science | Call for Speakers
Feb 23 @ 3:08 pm – 4:08 pm

Soapbox Science enters its 8th year in 2018, and promises to bring a summer of excitement, fun, and fantastic science. This year we are growing and expanding to be bigger and better than before, with events organised across the world. On top of this, Soapbox Science is exploring new avenues with six Art & Science events taking place in art festivals around the UK.

Apply to be a speaker!

We are excited to announce that the ‘call for speakers’ for Soapbox Science’s 2018 events is NOW OPEN!

But… we need your help! We are looking for women in all areas science, from PhD students to Professors, and from entry-level researchers to entrepreneurs, who are passionate about their work and want to spread the word.

  • Sign up for one of our Soapbox Science events here. Deadline: 23rd February Download a pdf version of the application here.

More information via the website linked above.

Bright Club Edinburgh | Performer call @ The Stand
Feb 27 all-day

Next show is 27th Feb – seeking performers!

It is about time we did another Bright Club – conveniently we planned ahead (or rather our friends at the Stand Comedy Club did).

And we are seeking performers! so if you fancy a go at performing, please email d.ridleyellis@napier.ac.uk (Dan)

The special sauce of Bright Club is that people do their stand-up about their special area of knowledge.  It doesn’t have to be academic if you are not a university person (although that is what the majority will be).  We are not looking for normal stand-up comedy – there is plenty of that around already.  We are looking for that particular blend of funny and interesting that our audience comes for.  If you’ve not done any comedy before that’s fine – you are exactly the sort of person we want the most.

Usually we are looking for 8 minutes of stand up (means about 7 minutes of material).

New folk get priority – but If we can, we do like to have a few repeat performers in the line up – and you don’t need new material (unless you want to do new stuff).

There is some training, outlined here http://brightclubedinburgh.blogspot.co.uk/p/training.html, which usually takes place from about three weeks from the show date.  We fit that around availability as best we can.

Performing involves being available on the night of the show (yes, we are surprised we need to say that too) – and this includes a quick rehearsal before the show (from about 6pm).

Public Engagement & Performance Conference | Second call @ The Hepworth, Wakefield
Mar 1 all-day

This conference provides a platform to explore different ways we come to know, understand and communicate. The conference seeks to look at how to make our work more and impactful, it provides a supportive forum to showcase innovative methodologies, provides a protective space to share works in progress and gain inspiration from a variety of experts in differ arts and science practices, and gives an opportunity to connect with and forge collaborations with colleagues from the arts, humanities, social sciences.

Key notes, film and multi media submissions include:

“Imagination & Intuition” Sarah Smith, Award winning sculptor, http://www.sarahsmith.org.uk “Community Theatre” Paul Burbridge Artistic Director Riding Lights Theatre; https://ridinglights.org/whats-on/ “Collaborations” Delia Muir, Wellcome Trust Fellow https://deliamuir.wordpress.com/author/deliamuir/ films “Emotionally Fit” by Jackie Goode, a journey into fashion through the lens of an ageing body, “Cultural Rivers” by Melanie Hani and Elaine Drainville which explores the use of ‘Static Animation’ and ‘Axiom Documentary’ film making processes to identify issues relating to children who are first generational immigrants in the UK, I Think About It Every day by David Jackson, Re-Performing the embodiments of war through the use of multi modal methods and documentary theatre these are just a taster of some of the contribution a full list will be available at  http://engageyork2015.org.uk/info/.

To submit an abstract go to http://engageyork2015.org.uk/submissions/.

We have a dedicated “short film/documentary” stream and multi-media possibilities for performance pieces.

We welcome live performance, installations, dance and music.

We welcome traditional submissions of papers on any aspect of research practice, arts-based research, public/community projects, or issues concerned with social justice, human rights, ethical challenges and dilemmas, public engagement project and issues surrounding impact.

We welcome works-in-progress for our ‘in-the-round’ discussion groups.

NCCPE What Works Events
Mar 1 @ 11:31 am – 12:31 pm

There is no deadline for this opportunity.


The NCCPE are delighted to announce the first in a series of ‘what works‘ events. The first topic focusses on the use of social media in engaging the public with research.

Last year the NCCPE commissioned a short piece of desk research to explore the use of social media in engaging the public with research. The researcher found:

*         Researchers are mainly using social media for the purposes of peer-to-peer networking and dissemination, and many receive support from their universities to do so

*         Significantly fewer researchers use social media to open up conversations or invite collaboration from the public.

We are therefore looking to develop support for academics who want to engage the public with social media, and we are keen to hear from you!

What excellent practice have we missed? Have you researched the use of social media and have ideas of how to make this work well? Do you have tools to support people wanting to enhance their work in this area? Have you come up with ways of addressing the challenges in this way? If so, please read our latest blog ‘social media – a ‘go-go’ or ‘no-go’ for quality public engagement and submit evidence to our call for evidence.

If you have any questions or would like to suggest a topic for a ‘what works’ event, please get in touch.

Dunbar Science Club | Invitation to deliver workshops @ Bleachingfield Community Centre
Mar 5 all-day

We would like to invite Edinburgh Researchers to deliver workshops for Dunbar Science Club on a Saturday morning during 2017.

Dunbar Science Club

Dunbar Science Club was created in 2011 by a small team of volunteer parents of pupils attending Dunbar Primary School.  Our objective is to inspire and encourage a life-long interest in science amongst children living in the Dunbar Cluster area by running an annual programme of varied workshops provided by local scientists (including volunteer parents) and external providers.

Dunbar Science Club was an initiative of Dunbar PS’s Parent Council’s “Science, Maths, Engineering & Technology Sub Group” that also created the annual award winning community science festival, Dunbar SciFest.

Dunbar Science Club is supported by Community Windpower Ltd, who also support Dunbar SciFest.

Please see the Dunbar Science Club Facebook page and our website to see previous workshop blogs etc.

Dunbar Science Club Workshops

We deliver three one-hour long workshops, ideally fortnightly between September and June annually. The first two workshops, starting at 9.30am and 10.30am are for children aged 5-8 and the third workshop, starting at 11.30am, is for children aged 9-12+.

We open the online workshop booking, via our own Dunbar Science Club App, two weeks before the workshop date.

Dunbar Science Club Workshops Dates 2017

  1. 01.17
  2. 02.17
  3. 02.17
  4. 03.17
  5. 03.17
  6. 04.17
  7. 05.17
  8. 05.17
  9. 06.17
  10. 06.17

Are you interested in delivering workshops for Dunbar Science Club?

If so, please contact the organiser asap and confirm the following:

  1. Which date / dates from the list above you would be available to deliver your workshop activities?
  1. That you are happy to deliver 3 x 45-50 minute duration workshops within the hour-long slots, starting at 9.30, 10.30 & 11.30am?
  1. That your workshop activities are suitable for the 2 age groups (5-8 and 9-12+)? Please note that we are very happy for you to use us as ‘guinea pigs’ to test out activities that may wish to run at open days, science festivals etc.
  1. How many people will deliver the workshops?
  1. Whether you charge a fee and if so how much or whether you’d be happy for us to cover your travel expenses? We will provide hot drinks and snacks from the Ridge Cafe

We would need you to provide the following information asap please:

  • Workshop Title
  • Workshop descriptive blurb (ideally 50 words, max 100 words)
  • The capacity of each workshop – please advise us on what you think will work best for your activity, anywhere between 10-30 children per session
  • Workshop Risk Assessment