On Friday I was invited to talk to the Emerging Scientist Forum 2017. Sponsored by Agilent Technologies it was a day for young scientists to meet, talk and discuss science and their careers in science. My talk was Should Scientists Think?

It was also a delight for me to see 24 x 3-minute presentations by these young scientists. I saw 24 glimpses into the thinking and ideas of a diversity of young scientists which has left me hopeful and inspired. I left feeling science is in very good hands for the future.

Another highlight was the excellent talk by Professor Malcolm McConville on the zig-zaggy, outside-the-box, career path of a scientist. He is Associate Director of Melbourne’s famous Bio21 Institute of Molecular Science and Biotechnology. Professor MacConville gave an intimate and entertaining talk about the traits needed for a life in science.

Over the meandering course of their career scientists may become researchers and lab heads but, as they navigate their way, they may also become … teachers, mentors, managers, writers, editors, peer reviewers, statisticians, fundraisers, accountants, travel agents, recruiters, conference organisers, small business owners, science communicators, graphic designers, web designers, ethics compliance monitors, project managers, data storage and sharing experts, political activists, science advocates, public speakers, science outreach specialists, PR gurus, mental health monitors, mediators, cheerleaders, life coaches, career counselors, therapists, immigration consultants, role models, and social directors … for none of which they are trained

2 thoughts on “Emerging Scientists Will Need to Acquire Many Skills

  1. Scientists will be able to run experiments faster forcing them to rethink the way their education is designed, the way their analysis is conducted and the number of iteration they need to reach before concluding an experiment. This simple change in speed will change their role and impact on society even further. They’ll need to develop the skills to cope with such change, including extreme and sometimes uneducated judgement, while proving that what they do changes the world. We’ll expect more of them, they’ll expect more of themselves.

  2. It has become clear with the advent of technologies that our roles in life have expanded, sometimes by necessity, sometimes because we want to explore and enrich our days. Access to the world as a whole, whether online or via travelling has given us the ability to live more fluid lives, lives less embedded in our geography, our ancestors or socio-economic groupings.

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