The McKerrow Cup
Why does OGG hold this event?
At the 2011 Oxford Geology Group Christmas Lecture, Professor Stewart spoke about the importance of communicating our understanding of geosciences to different audiences. Iain Stewart particularly emphasised the challenge of engaging the general public with the role that geoscientists play in solving the many problems that society faces. Iain said that we had to dispell the popular notion that geoscience is just about the rocks, instead changing the narrative to include fascinating stories that geoscientists can tell about our planet. There are significant challenges in the fields of energy, resources, water, waste disposal and hazards that geoscientists work on and the general understanding of the Earth system processes that decisions will have to be made is poor.
The lecture showed how often the media of science communication is not often the media of mass communication and if geologists are to explain their science to the public, they have to engage with the mass media and increasingly social media on the Internet.
Iain Stewart offered the audience a salutory reminder of the Italian seismologists who have been imprisoned for inadequately communicating the idea of scientific uncertainty.
Communicating science to the public is becoming more and more important and to underline this fact, OGG runs an annual competition open to DPhil/Phd research students.
Participants give a talk to an infomed, but non-speacialist audience and a panel of three judges. At the end of the competition, the audience is asked to rank the talks. The panel of judges take into account the results of the audience vote before determining the winner. The winning speaker receives The Young Geoscientist of the Year Award (a monetary prize of £400 from the Oxford Geology Group Community Chest) and the McKerrow Cup. The winner will be invited to speak at the Oxford Colloquium on Saturday October 13, 2018.
A FULL LIST OF 2018 SPEAKERS WILL BE POSTED HERE SOON
Winners of the McKerrow Cup
2014 Harriet Rawson University of Oxford (Supervisors: Professor T. Mather & Professor D. Pyle)
2015 Jack Matthews University of Oxford (Supervisor: Professor M. Brasier)
2016 Jonathan Burley University of Oxford (Supervisor: Dr R. F. Katz)
2017 Eleni Wood Open University (Supervisor: Dr C. Warren)