Identifying compelling topics
Provoking the audience’s imagination is effective. But what aspects of your work will spark some interest?
Consider that elements of the scientific method you as a researcher might not consider particularly interesting, might in fact be quite interesting for audiences, such as:
- “Why do we know this, and we don’t know that?”
- “How” things were discovered, not “what” was discovered
- “Where ideas come from” for example, on holiday, walking to the store, just before falling asleep… anywhere where it’s not “forced”
- “What we still don’t know”
- Bitter rivalries in science
- Show how accidents, miscalculations and chance all played a role in significant discoveries
- What are the results so far and how did they happen?
- Memorable design or iconic/beautiful imagery
- What’s at stake, what will change, what will be confirmed if the “mystery” is solved?
- Connect with your humanity and curiosity. Why did the researcher pursue this line of inquiry? Why does the researcher keep doing it after all these years?
- When is “what you don’t know” an advantage in scientific research? “Discoveries happen when you admit your ignorance.”
Next: Expressing complex ideas