FameLab – a national competition to discover the new faces of UK science launched today in London (Tuesday 8 November 2005). The competition -dubbed the science world’s equivalent of Pop Idol - is the brainchild of the Cheltenham Science Festival and NESTA (the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts) and supported by Pfizer, The Daily Telegraph, Research Councils UK and Channel 4.
Now in its second year, FameLab encourages scientists to inspire and excite public imagination with a vision of science in the 21st century. At regional auditions in Spring 2006 scientists will have just 3 minutes to prove to a panel of expert judges they’ve got what it takes to bring science alive on TV. Ten finalists selected at the heats will go on to compete in the final at the Cheltenham Science Festival. The overall winner of FameLab 2006 will walk away with £2,000, the opportunity to work with a TV producer and pitch their ideas to Channel 4, and a tour of events.
Speaking at the launch Kathy Sykes, Cheltenham Science Festival Director said she was overwhelmed by the success of FameLab at identifying talented communicators. “There is a huge public appetite for science, driven more by curiosity, rather than fear and suspicion and this has been confirmed by the MORI poll commissioned by NESTA and released today. FameLab addresses the public’s desire for clear, concise and accurate information on science both directly through identifying talent, and indirectly by building bridges between the public, the media and science.“
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