• Question: on a scale of 1-10 how much do you love science and how much do you want to be a well-known scientist?

    Asked by jamjarjarvis to Barbara, Matt, Ravinder, Sophie, Tristan on 16 Mar 2015.
    • Photo: Barbara Shih

      Barbara Shih answered on 16 Mar 2015:

      Probably 8 for loving science. I am always excited about hearing new scientific discovery and read the science section in news. And I absolutely loved some of the questions students asked in I’m a scientist, it’s just fun thinking/learning about how the world works! I’m not giving it a 10 because at a career level, there are a lot of boring paperwork and stress related to science. Also, I’m not quite as into science as some other people might be – I don’t spend ALL my free time doing science.

      It would have to be around 4-5 for wanting to be a well-known scientist. Being famous sounds like a lot of paperwork and stress. I would rather spend my time do fun stuff.

    • Photo: Matthew Moore

      Matthew Moore answered on 18 Mar 2015:

      Definitely a 10. My largest difficult was choosing what part to actually focus on!

      In reality science lies on a spectrum of observation and hypothesis and experimentation and analysis. This ranges from looking at sub-atomic particles to looking at human social structures. The only reason we have disciplines of science, biology, chemistry, physics and maths is because it’s too much to learn in one lifetime! Within each of these major disciplines there are millions more options too and plenty of overlap!

      Increasingly, it’s going to be important for young scientists to train in an interdisciplinary way, you need to focus down on some species or phenomena or method but this can be helped by all the other fields too!

      As for being a well known scientist, I’m excited about science and would love an opportunity to communicate it to the public! Science is interesting and most people are put off by boring fact learning in school. Whether or not I’m well known for my research, I don’t mind. Some people promote themselves a lot while others are in the lab doing the actual research and people in the field know that!