Script has delivered science communication training to talented African early career researchers recognised by The Royal Society for having the potential to become leaders in their field.

The Royal Society is a Fellowship of more than 1,600 of the world’s most eminent scientists and is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence.

The society published Isaac Newton’s Principia Mathematica and Benjamin Franklin’s kite experiment demonstrating the electrical nature of lightning.

Training future leaders

Script, SciDev.Net’s science communication training programme provided support to 60 recipients of the society’s Future Leaders – African Independent Research Fellowships (FLAIR).

Script gave training to the researchers to help them effectively communicate their research to policymakers and the public.

A range of topics were explored as part of the Script training delivered to FLAIR programme researchers.

Topics included practical ways to simplify scientific information without compromising its meaning.

Other topics aimed to help the researchers build their profiles and share their findings on social media.

Promoting research findings

The ultimate aim was to equip the participants with the necessary skills and confidence to promote their findings to a range of audiences including policymakers who have the ability to influence change from research recommendations.

SciDev.Net’s Operations Director Paul Dawson said, “Script is honoured to be associated with such a prestigious organisation as The Royal Society.

“It is linked with so many eminent scientists of the past four centuries – from Newton to Darwin, Hawking and beyond.

“The FLAIR programme aligns with our own mission of supporting Africa’s emerging and established scientists to communicate their research not only within their own continent but also further afield.”

At the conclusion of the training, SciDev.Net organised a two-hour networking event to allow the FLAIR researchers to meet experienced journalists and to put to practice the process of sharing with them their research.

The researchers that participated in the training said it was both informative and motivating.

“I’ve been going away from social media lately because I thought it was very time consuming. I didn’t really see the benefits of putting things on social media. But I’m considering it now after the modules we had, and after talking about the visibility of our research work”, said a participant.

Since its inception in 2018 at the Next Einstein Forum in Kigali, Rwanda, Script has provided training to nearly 9,000 people either directly in person or online.

Courses and guides

Featured courses, produced by SciDev.Net’s Training Coordinator Dr Charles Wendo, include ‘Science communication skills for journalists,’ ‘Science communication skills for press officers’ and ‘Media skills for scientists.’

Also included in the Script website are eight practical guides: ‘How to give a good science talk anywhere’, ‘How to report the science of COVID-19,’ ‘How to give a science flash talk,’ ‘How to report scientific findings,’ ‘How to find the right journalist to report on your research,’ ‘How to convince the media to report about your research,’ ‘How to report from lab visits and field trips,’ and ‘How to become a star journalist from scratch.’

Script currently has six partners made up of some of the most forward-thinking media and academic institutions in Africa.

These include Nasarawa State University, Nigeria, Makerere University, Uganda, Moi University, Kenya, The University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Script has also worked with Nation Media Group and Vision Group, Radio Nigeria and The Conversation Africa.

Additional information

Main image: Script training by SciDev.Net includes helping scientists communicate their research to the media more effectively Credit: SciDev.Net).

Other relevant stories

See also the stories ‘New book to help improve science communication in Africa is now available’ and ‘New web app connects journalists and scientists.’

About Script

Script is SciDev.Net’s science communication training programme.

We provide a number of free training and networking resources for journalists, scientists and anyone who wants to communicate science in an engaging and accurate way. As well as in-depth bespoke training.

Find out more about Script training by SciDev.Net – including courses, guides, news, and bespoke training from

About SciDev.Net

SciDev.Net is the world’s leading source of reliable and authoritative news, views and analysis about science and technology for global development.

Our Mission is to use independent journalism to help individuals and organisations apply science to decision-making in order to drive equitable, sustainable development and poverty reduction. SciDev.Net is part of CAB International (CABI) – a not-for-profit organisation that improves people’s lives worldwide by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment.

SciDev.Net operates editorially independently from CABI with its content overseen by an independent Editorial Advisory Committee whose role is to ensure our editorial independence protocol is adhered to. The protocol is available on request.

Find out more about SciDev.Net

Useful links