Public engagement

Psychiatrists are keen to change myths about mental disorders. We are also keen to change public opinion through public engagement. Of course, that's the main reason for writing this. The figures on mental disorders may surprise you. One in five mothers suffer a mental disorder during pregnancy or in the first year after childbirth.
The science-in-the-pub experience has recently gone global with the arrival of Pint of Science in 2013. I spoke both at this year's launch event for PoS (as described here) and at the festival itself the week before last, in the "Making The Future" event in Nottingham. In just three years PoS has grown so that it spans 20 cities in the UK, with events now also happening in five different continents.
We call for government to require politicians and civil servants to engage with researchers. Open and permanent programmes to bridge the gap between scientific research and policy should be hallmarks of every government.
Greg Clark takes over Willetts' old brief, and George Freeman will be the UK's first 'Minister for Life Sciences'. What does life hold in store for them, and for the science sector they'll be responsible for? David Willetts - for all the protests that dogged him over Higher Education reforms - was an almost universally-liked figure amongst the UK science community.