NASW news

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David Berreby here, another of the NASW traveling fellows, and a first-time attendee. I'm the author of Us and Them: The Science of Identity and I write the "Mind Matters" blog at Bigthink.com. Since the late 1980's, I've written about science (mostly as it relates to human behavior) for magazines and newspapers (including The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, Nature, The New Republic, Smithsonian, Discover, among many others).

I spent my first professional conference hoping no one would notice how nervous I was. I fidgeted in my new “professional” clothes and fiddled with my flimsy business cards. I was a college junior, new to the world of science writing, and I felt like an imposter. While I’ve since accepted that I may never learn to walk in high-heels, arriving at the 2010 NASW conference, I am comfortable. I know how to network.

Greetings! I'm Jim Downing and I'll be blogging the partners and ethics in the new media era session (Saturday, 2:15 p.m.), which will explore the ethical questions raised by the rising influence of non-traditional journalism funders, such as foundations, the private sector and government. Is it sufficient to be transparent about who's paying for a story? And if not, what can we do about it?

The NASW board just finished its meeting. No spoilers for the business meeting tomorrow. Primarily we were there to think big and long-term. We're working on a vision statement for NASW that encompasses the turmoil in science journalism over the past few years (and what we hope are some values that should remain constant).

It’s happening. Publications everywhere are adding video and audio clips to their Web sites, uploading everything from standalone teasers and interviews with prominent researchers, to “This-is-how-it-really-works” demonstrations.

I'm Catherine Meyers, a graduate student in the science communication program at UC Santa Cruz. On Saturday I will be blogging from the session "A global science writing community: Gearing up for the World Conference of Science Journalists 2011." I am excited to learn about the world of science writing outside of the United States.