Last week, we focused on some tips that expert Arab science communicators shared throughout the forum to help beginners hone their crafts. This week, we are shedding light on remarkable Arab initiatives we found out about during the forum that could inspire SciComm hopefuls in different ways.
1- Climate School
Public awareness about climate change is lacking in the Arab world. As unfortunate as that is, it makes the topic of climate change a fertile land for Arab science communicators to grow their skills through. With the right training, more capable professionals can emerge to educate not only the public, but also decision-makers, about climate change.
With that said, trainings are now available via Climate School, as we discovered during AFSMC’22. Tenured journalist and Climate Tracker fellow,Rahma Diaa, founded the Climate School initiative to provide professional climate journalism trainings that are fully free and in Arabic.
So far, Climate School has organized virtual workshops about covering COP conferences, mobile journalism, and writing interesting stories about Biological Diversity.
Make sure to follow Climate School onFacebook andTwitter to learn about upcoming trainings.
2- Agro Support Analytics
Our next featured initiative is a SciComm marvel.
Whilst the audience for traditional SciComm is members of the general public with low scientific literacy,Agro Support Analytics targets a group of individuals whose majority is not literate at all: Egyptian farmers.
For centuries, Agriculture, powered by the adept hands of Egyptian farmers, had been a cornerstone of Egyptian economy. But, today amidst the aforementioned climate changes and an overwhelming technological boom, farmers are struggling to keep up. Their harvests are affected by phenomena that they cannot explain.
Now more than ever, they need their voices to be heard. And, that is exactly what Agro Support Analytics aims to do. In a collaboration between Fayoum University and University of the West of England, the team created an online platform where farmers can raise their complaints and receive timely, evidence-based support.
To make sure farmers learn how to use the platform, the team arranged meet-ups with many farmers to teach them or members of their families to use Agro Support Analytics.
3- The Misinformation Vaccine
At SASTA, we have gone in-depth before about the abundance of scientific information now accessible to the public, especially about critical topics such as COVID-19, and how that could precipitate misinformation.
There are certain misinformation alarms that experts can easily identify while the public cannot. That is whyVerify Media Platform created the Misinformation Vaccine.
The Misinformation Vaccine is a game that you can play to learn the essentials of fact-checking. Throughout the game, you will be playing the role of a journalist. The game will provide you with different headlines and ask you, as a responsible journalist, whether you should or should not publish said headline.
For every misinforming article you choose to publish, the game will show you its expected ramifications. That way you will see first-hand how dangerous misinformation can be and learn how to avoid it from the beginning.