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The Science in the Pub program takes expert knowledge straight to the pub
When watching up with friends on a Friday night for a few drinks in a pub, don’t be surprised if you bump into a scientist. What if I told you that your next visit to the local could turn out to be a learning experience and you might end up having an insightful discussion with a specialised scientist?
Science in the Pub Adelaide (SciPubAdelaide) is a free event open to the general public once a month on Friday afternoons at The Rob Roy Hotel after work. Here, people who may or may not be scientists come together in a relaxed and informal atmosphere to discuss, debate, criticise and learn more about current science issues while enjoying a drink on the side.
Instead of the usual pub discussions like which is the best beer, or reviewing footy games, Science in the Pub enthusiasts engage in discussions like why we crave the food we eat, where water comes from and where it goes, the truth about vaccines and understanding gravitational waves.
Breast cancer researcher Dr Pallave Dasari is an active committee member of SciPubAdelaide.“I became involved with SciPub as one of their speakers on the science of cancer,” Pallave told Indian Link. “I had such a wonderful experience that I joined the organising committee and have remained ever since, helping to create these events. We welcome all people to attend the SciPubAdelaide events to learn about science.”
The SciPubAdelaide initiative was started by Dr Andy Flies and Emily Johnston, researchers at the University of South Australia. Founded as an international initiative of taking science to the public, there were no current chapters in Australia, so Andy and Emily raised funds and set up Science in the Pub Adelaide.
“Where else does the public get to talk to scientific experts about their research?” Pallave observed. “Our regular attendees have heard speakers from a wide variety of subjects and institutions, including universities and the South Australia Museum. Each month we bring the top experts of Adelaide to cover a new topic in science; so far we have talked dinosaurs, stars, cancer, water and many other subjects. We often get suggestions from the audience about future topics. The upcoming March event will be covering the science of food.”
So, if there are any science questions boggling your mind and you would like to discuss them with experts in the field, a pub might just be the place for you to visit.
Holding these meetings in a pub gives it a laid back approach, allowing people like us, who would normally be intimidated to find themselves amongst a group of scientists and researchers, to be a part of these discussions. Science in the Pub focuses on all aspects of science; past topics include astronomy, cancer, palaeontology, pain, bees, water and many other topics. Topics for 2016 will include food, geology, weather and wine.
Let’s raise our glasses to drinking around science on a Friday night!