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Communicating Geoscience: Building Public Interest and Promoting Inclusive Dialogue

04 September 2018
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Event type:
Conference, Specialist Group
Organised by:
Geological Society Events, 2018 Year of Resources, Energy Group
The Geological Society, Burlington House
Event status:

Engaging with the public to communicate geoscience can be fraught with difficulties. The explanation of complex subsurface concepts and the use of scientific terminology can alienate those we seek to engage with. This can be further complicated by the inclusion of hydrocarbons into the discussion. Communication from the energy industry regarding its activities, products and role in society can inspire a passionate and often polarised reaction.

Science is now a mainstream public entity, frequently broadcast through film & television, the internet and increasingly, social media. Public access to science has never been easier, leading to greater scrutiny of both business and individual interests. Accompanying this is the often targeted manipulation of theory and fact, which has led to the rise of the phenomenon of “fake news”.

A perception of mistrust towards science and a bias towards industry, including those working in academia who are undertaking industry-funded research, can make science communication challenging and frustrating. However engaging with the public can be rewarding and is a key tool to build trust, dispel myths and provide up-to-date scientific knowledge to the public.

This one-day conference aims to look in-depth at geoscience communication in the energy industry in order to better achieve effective communication. This includes evaluating lessons learned from case studies, establishing best practice and understanding the value and importance of public perception. Speakers have been invited from both industry and academia and represent a range of disciplines, including oil & gas, carbon capture & storage, shale gas, geothermal and social science.

To further explore themes of communication, it is hoped to live streaming sessions to virtual delegates in order to reach a wider audience. The conference will conclude with a panel discussion and a drinks reception to facilitate networking.

A copy of the provisional programme is now available to download. 


Kirstie Wright

Heriot-Watt University

Anna Clark

Heriot-Watt University

 For further information and registration:

Registration is now open. Please either register online, or fill out the downloadable registration form and return to Sarah Woodcock. 

  • For Live stream registration, please fill in the registration form and return to Sarah Woodcock. Once you have registered you will shortly be given a unique login code to what the conference live. 

Sarah Woodcock, The Geological Society, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BG.

T: +44 (0)20 7434 9944 or email:

Registration rates

£ 100.00
£ 150.00
£ 100.00
£ 100.00
£ 100.00
£ 25.00

Geolsoc Contact

Sarah Woodcock

The Geological Society
Burlington House

Event sponsors