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British Science Association news: Mass participation

Coralie Young, the British Science Association’s Communications Manager, celebrates upcoming events

Coralie Young, the British Science Association’s Communications Manager, celebrates upcoming events.

Change at the top

The British Science Association will be welcoming a new chief executive, Imran Khan, from the beginning of April.

Imran joins the Association from the Campaign for Science and Engineering (CaSE), an independent advocate for science and engineering in theUK, where he has been Director since 2010.

Khan has a background in Biology and science communication, and has previously worked as a senior parliamentary researcher for Dr Evan Harris.

Meanwhile, departing chief executive Roland Jackson will continue his work with Sciencewise. He will also join the Royal Institution as a visiting Fellow, focusing on the life of the Irish scientist, science communicator and mountaineer, John Tyndall.

Get involved in National Science & Engineering Week!

We are about to celebrate the 20thNational Science & Engineering Week, which started life as SET7 back in 1994, and became NSEW in 2007. This year, 15-24 March, will see thousands of science workshops, displays, exhibitions, talks and demonstrations taking place across the country, in what we hope will be the biggest and best NSEW yet.

You can share your thoughts and great event photos with us on twitter @ScienceWeekUK or send them to

Join us at the Big Bang Fair!

The finals of our National Science + Engineering Competition will be taking place at this year’s Big Bang Fair, which will be held at the Excel Centre in London on 14-17 March.

This year, the Competition will be awarding thousands of pounds worth of prizes, and our sponsors will be offering prizes in the form of exciting science and engineering related tours, trips abroad, and work experience.

We are also delighted to introduce three new awards this year, the EEF Manufacturing Prize, the IBM Smarter Planet Prize, and the UKFT Textile Edge Prize. Click here to register, and for more information about the prizes and how young people can get involved in the competition next year.

The finalists will be judged by a range of experts, including our panel of celebrity judges, who this year include Professor Brian Cox, Professor Sir Tim Hunt, Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, Rachel Riley, Ben Miller, Kate Bellingham, Lieutenant-Colonel Dick Strawbridge, Professor Ada Yonath, Dr Shini Somara and Mark Champkins.

The fair is open to family groups on 16-17 March. Entry is free.

Ask the Experts

This March, the National Science + Engineering Competition (NSEC) will be offering young people a chance to interact with leading scientists and engineers as part of National Science & Engineering Week, with their new ‘Ask the Experts’ initiative. Young people (8–18) can pose their burning science questions to an expert in the field. 

Young people and schools can get involved by submitting their questions online from 15– 29 March, and attenders at The Big Bang Fair (London Excel, 14-17 March 2013) will be able to submit questions in writing at the NSEC stand.

Selected questions will be answered by one of the expert panel, which includes Nobel Prize winner Sir Tim Hunt, space scientist Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock MBE and TV gastronaut Stefan Gates. Experts are being added daily; check the website for the latest names!

Calls of the wild

To mark the start of National Science & Engineering Week 2013, an exciting new mass participation project is taking place. ‘Calls of the wild’ explores the psychology of certain natural sounds.

Although the natural world is rich in interesting sounds, calls and songs, surprisingly, there's very little scientific evidence about how these sounds can affect people psychologically. ‘Calls of the wild’ gives the public an opportunity to help answer these kinds of questions by taking part in science online wherever they are - even on the move.  Go online to to get involved.

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Coralie Young
Coralie Young is the Commuincations Manager at the British Science Association
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