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Scientists not the Science

Scientists not the Science an award-winning podcast, exploring academic culture. It aims to understand and examine different aspects of working in research.

Learning from others

Photograph of podcast interview in the field

Interviewing the Institute of Physics outreach team at The Cally Festival in 2015. Image credit: Johanna Kieniewicz.

What does it mean to be a scientist? Scientists not the Science interviews the people responsible for defining science as we know it: the students, staff, technicians, journal editors, journalists, engagement professionals and science comedians.

The show features a mixture of biographical interviews and episodes around pertinent themes, such as imposter syndrome, mental health, and understanding the attitudes of young people to studying science. The goal: unpacking how science in inextricably linked to those conducting it and how research culture impacts scientists (and indirectly the science).

Visit the podcast website

Listen to the trailer

Broader impact

British podcast awards logo and screenshot of a journal article

Scientists not the Science was awarded Best Interview Podcast at the British Podcast Awards.

Now featuring over 70 episodes, the podcast won the Best Interview Podcast at the British Podcast Awards 2017. Since then, it has resulted in multiple invited workshops, talks and engagement activities, and an essay.1

The podcast facilitates the exploration of both individual stories, but also the people working to improve how science is done. This includes talking to the researchers and journalists who tackle long-standing systemic issues within science.

Insight from the podcast is incorporated into the Complex Interface Team's everyday practice. For example, through seminars to early career researchers exploring the challenges of imposter syndrome and to ensure our outreach work with young people is designed to be inclusive and evidence based.

Read about ideas that have emerged from the podcast

  1. Higgins SG, Understanding Scientists is Key for Science, 2019, Nature Materials, DOI: 10.1038/s41563-019-0432-2