May 1, 2014 - 9:57am - Posted by Raquell

On May 17th, I have the opportunity to participate in the Ph.D. Career Conference in San Diego representing Ph.D.s that have  a start-up company. I am excited to share the process of creating improvscience and what I have learned from colleagues along the way.

April 20, 2014 - 9:35pm - Posted by Raquell

I don't know many people who look forward to those large social gatherings of professional colleagues where striking up seemingly random conversation is dubiously expected to find new common interest and joint projects. Okay, sometimes I am excited to go and find people who are doing things I have only dreamt about. But I still find it anxiety producing. How do we talk to one another? How will I share what I do? How will they respond to my work? How will they respond to my interest in their work?

March 17, 2014 - 7:44am - Posted by Raquell

All of us have been in a situation in which one person in our group says something, intentionally or unintentionally, that we perceive as excluding or hurtful to another person in our group. What do you do? It’s a serious and challenging question: What do we do?!? I’ll be working with faculty at the NCWIT summit, May 20th on exactly this question.

February 26, 2014 - 5:35pm - Posted by Raquell

After a couple of weeks on the road, it’s nice to be able to sit and reflect on the events that took place. And when those events include courageous, playful colleagues, it’s a pleasurable recollection. So, what happened?

January 27, 2014 - 12:25am - Posted by Raquell

"Play" is a provocative word in some work places, despite increasing recognition of its significant contribution to human development, creativity and productivity. As I head off to Seattle (Tapia Conference) and then Chicago (American Association for the Advancement of Science), I envision a range of sentiments in response to my call to scientists to develop through improvisation: to play. 

January 7, 2014 - 9:01am - Posted by Raquell

The scientific community is rallying behind the cry, "Communicate your science."  This call is being answered by innovators who bring the arts and skills of communication to science students and professionals. The significance of improvisation in graduate education and our scientific professional development is the focus of the Nature Career feature, "Communication: spontaneous scientists" by Rachel Bernstein.

November 13, 2013 - 7:13am - Posted by Raquell

Improvisation and communicating science are being writ large at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting 2014 in Chicago. Alan Alda, formerly known to many as Hawkeye of the TV series MASH and now known for the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University, will keynote the conference whose theme is Discovery and Innovation.

November 12, 2013 - 5:26pm - Posted by Raquell

What does it mean to see improvisation in science or to see scientific research as improvisation? In conversations with colleagues asking this same question, we have a couple of answers. One is that the research process itself is improvisational. You have to work with the constraints of what is already “known”,  and the constraints of what you can feasibly test. These shape the scientific stage. You can add information, data, ideas to the scene, yet, how this changes or adds to the science story is not known until others add their contributions.

October 25, 2013 - 8:20am - Posted by Raquell

When you’re willing to be “out there”, brave in saying what you’re interested in, you have the chance of finding others doing something similar. Trained as a researcher, living in research centers and keeping a finger in publishing scientific reviews, chapters and articles, I am well aware of the weirdness of doing improvisational workshops with my colleagues. I often wake saying to myself, “what are you doing?”

August 10, 2013 - 7:48am - Posted by Raquell

I'm just about to leave a wonderful meeting, q-bio. I was invited to deliver one of my "improvisation for STEM professionals" workshops. It's essentially a community building, getting know each other as people workshop that's fun. The organizers were clearly interested in creating an environment where their participants could be comfortable, open and interested in each other as scientists and people.


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