Interesting mix at Pint of Science festival

The speakers for the upcoming Pint of Science global festival have been announced and those attending have been promised three nights of cutting edge discussions between Monday May 14 and Wednesday May 16.

The annual global festival is set to kick-off at the Cause Effect bar, in Gardens, moving to Devil’s Peak Brewery de Oude in Durbanville.

University of Cape Town’s Dr Jonathan Shock will kick off the show in Gardens, touching on the legacy and impact of Stephen Hawking. Among other speakers will be Dr Rubina Bunjun who will will talk about HIV’s new BFF and Pontsho Maruping will give a talk on international governance of outer spaces.

The event aims to bring the lab to the public and foster conversation – over a pint – on the latest research and findings in science.

The project is the brainchild of two research scientists, Dr Michael Motskin and Dr Praveen Paul, who started and organised an event called “Meet the Researchers” which brought people affected by different diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, motor neurone and multiple sclerosis into their labs to show them the kind of research they do.

The pair saw the enthusiasm of the public interested in meeting scientists and thought it would be a great idea to bring scientists out to the people.

It was in May 2013 when they held their first Pint of Science festival which featured some of the biggest names in their fields explaining their groundbreaking work to lovers of science and beer.

The event was brought to South Africa by Eugene Marais and the current director for SA, Chantal Louw, interviewed for the post in 2016. The scientists will cover topics that affect ordinary people and they will be in layman’s terms. “It is about crossing the borders of science jargon and speaking to non-scientists. After a 15-minute talk, there will be time for questions and unpacking.”

On the criteria that they follow when choosing the speakers, Ms Louw said this year they chose talks that are most relevant, interesting and topical to where we are.

Ms Louw said anyone living in South Africa can apply and the best way for her to choose a speaker is to read about their work. “I do believe that each chapter head will arrange talks around subjects that are strong or that are moving forward in interesting ways,” she said.

Ms Louw has encouraged people to apply for the next year so they can take the event to other venues. “Capetonians can look forward to an interesting, exciting night delving into the mysteries of the world we live, and the universe we are a part of. All in a comfortable setting with great food and drinks,” she said.

Visit www.pintofscience. for more information about Pint of Science.