Stop us if you’ve heard this one: A scientist, a writer, a musician, and an artist walked into a podcast. Her friends waved and said, “Hi, Mel!”
This week, Jocelyn and Bradley are joined by multitalented, multidimensional neuroscientist and human (or is she . . . ?) Dr. Melinda Smith. Mel shares how she fell in love with the brain, what motivated her to transition from research to a full-time career in science communication, and how her knowledge of neuroscience gives her unique insight into how best to discuss complex scientific concepts effectively with diverse audiences. She emphasizes the crucial role of empathy in science communication—indeed, all communication—and explains why fiction is an especially valuable means both to cultivate empathy and to convey scientific content in a meaningful way. The friends also discuss Mel’s own impressive body of fiction writing and the themes of intelligence, “artificial” and otherwise, it explores.
Follow Melinda on Twitter @ScienceGeekMel, and learn more about her amazing work at https://www.sciencegeekmel.com/ and at the links below:
Melinda’s writing on Medium: https://firstname.lastname@example.org
Melinda’s SciComm talk: https://youtu.be/maX5Rx7gGuQ
“Words Matter: Jargon Alienates Readers”: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-00580-w
“Elon Musk is one step closer to connecting a computer to your brain”: https://www.vox.com/recode/2020/8/28/21404802/elon-musk-neuralink-brain-machine-interface-research