Last year, the BSA surveyed science communicators about their needs. You said you wanted more opportunities to encounter ideas and people from other sectors, particularly within the arts.

So we've come up with a new type of event: Culture Shock. We wanted to capture the highs and lows of working with other sectors. Culture shock, a syndrome that occurs when you move into an unfamiliar environment, seemed like the ideal lens through which to look at this..

For each Culture Shock, we'll partner with an organisation from another sector, bringing their audiences together with science communicators. For the first event in London on November 17, it's science and the arts, with Fun Palaces.

Talks will be in themed sessions that follow the four stages of culture shock. We hope that taking artists and scientists through a collective journey through the stages of culture shock will bring them closer together, and give rise to ideas that either group alone wouldn't have come up with.

The four sessions are as follows:


First, we cover the exciting opportunities in the Honeymoon stage. Author Colin Grant will be sharing his experience of how science can open up new narrative opportunities.

Then there are the lows of Anxiety. Journalist and psychotherapist Philippa Perry will be one of our 'Anxiety' speakers, and I’m really excited to hear her thoughts!

In Adjustment - the 'Rocky training montage' stage - speakers will talk about how they overcome these difficulties, including Jess Thom, whose Science Communication Conference keynote was our most popular session.

Finally, in Assimilation, we’ll consider how to move freely in different sectors. Brockwell Lido Fun Palace co-Makers, Dr Elizabeth Glennon and writer Shelley Silas, will talk about how they made their collaboration work whilst being from very different backgrounds, and will reveal how they transformed  a spark of mutual interest into a successful working partnership.

We hope attendees come away with new connections and ideas, which could open up a different perspective on their work, or even lead to innovative projects and collaborations.

Please do come and join us – tickets are £100, and they're available until the day before the event (16 November), providing we don't sell out.

We are also keen to hear your ideas for future Culture Shock events. If you can suggest an organisation we should partner with for Chapter 2, be they from sport, heritage, politics, or any sector, then send your ideas to [email protected].