I am keen on spreading the word that mathematical sciences can be used to make people's lives better. I have experience in TV, radio, newspaper, magazine and face-to-face public engagement.
I had a place on the Maths Busking training in Leeds in March 2011, and performed at Leamington Peace festival on June 18th 2011, Programme here (see campaigns, Saturday). I also gave a live interview on Coventry & Warwickshire radio before the performance. Here is the video of that interview, followed by some highlights from the busking:
Maths Busking organisation
Following my radio interview about maths busking (above), I was invited back on Friday 8th July 2011 to talk live on air about the odds of winning the £166 million Euro Millions rollover jackpot.
I was invited on 8th August 2011 to discuss the report by Carol Vorderman et al on making maths compulsory part of education until age 18. This discussion also went out live, and I opted to take part by telephone. Vorderman report here.
Farming Today featured Martine's expert elicitation workshop linked to building decision support for pollinator abundance (available until 14th May 2016 here, starting 22:30) and it was featured on BBC Midlands Today, with live lunchtime interview and recorded interview broadcast on evening bulletin (here)
I gave a talk for the general public at Cafe Scientifique, Leamington Spa, July 2011, see here and another September 2014 and two at Cafe Scientifique, Wantage in January and July 2021 online. Details below
Warwick Statistics Society Uncertainty and statistical modelling for communicating climate risk
Kings Maths School MathAgora (Online) Saving the Bees with Maths
Cafe Scientifique Wantage (Online) The Challenges of Scientific Uncertainty
RSS Local Branch (Online) Statistical modelling for safeguarding the nation’s digital memory
IMA West Midlands Branch (Online) Mathematics for safeguarding the nation’s digital memory
Howes Primary School Science week (Online) Bees have needs for flowers and trees, science and maths can help.
Cafe Scientifique, Wantage (Online) Beehives and Space technology with Paulette Elliott
The Pint of Science planned for 2020 was cancelled due to Coronavirus restrictions.
I was a guest speaker for University of Bath 'Women in Maths' group, University of Baths, November 2019 ' Surprised to be saving the bees with Maths'
I was a speaker at pint of science at The White Horse pub May 2019 'Saving the bees – how can maths help?'
Title: Saving the bees – why do we need maths?
Abstract: “Professor Einstein, the learned scientist, once calculated that if all bees disappeared off the earth, four years later all humans would also have disappeared.” Abeilles et fleurs, June, 1965.
It is uncertain if Einstein really said this, but it is certainly true that loss of pollination services would make human life very difficult. It is estimated that 70% of important food crops are insect-pollinated, including fruits, nuts, vegetables, seeds, spices, coffee and Agave from which Tequila is produced.
In recent years there has been much concern about declining insect pollinator populations, particularly honeybees. This led to the production of the UK’s national pollinator strategy and a temporary Europe-wide ban on the use of Neonicotinoid insecticides. The insect pollinator system is typical of today’s ever more interconnected world,
Complex contemporary policy problems require a means for networking together expert evidence from different and disparate areas of expertise which nevertheless interlock and interact, for dealing with uncertainty, as well as for managing complex questions at different scales.
The expert decision-maker needs to take responsibility for their decision and also to be able to justify and explain their decision to an auditor, so there is no place for black-box systems.
How can we use maths to overcome this problem? How can we use structured expert judgement as a robust and systematic way to derive probability distributions?
I will outline the answers to these questions through the example of food security and pollination.
I spoke about How can Maths help save the bees? at Oxford's 'It all adds up for Girls' event on 10th January It All Adds Up for Girls Oxford
Dr Martine Barons from the University of Warwick will talk about how her mathematical work is helping to reverse the decline in the UK’s bee populations. By providing a new way to combine information from lots of sources, Martine is helping provide decision support for policymakers whose task is to select the best combination from a range of strategies to support these pollinating insects, which are so vital to human survival.
My pollinator expert elicitation workshop, held on 6th April 2016 and linked to building decision support for pollinator abundance, was featured on BBC TV and Radio. Live interview by telephone on Radio CWR breakfast show, live lunchtime interview on BBC Midlands Today, recorded interview broadcast on evening bulletin (here) and BBC Radio 4 Farming Today package broadcast Friday 15th and Saturday 16th April (available until 14th May 2016 here, starting 22:30). I was also invited to contribute a blog to EPSRC here in November 2016.
Interview for Womanthology magazine here
I was interviewed at the Birmingham Food Council Food poverty Workshop: Video
Interviewed Fields Medal winner, Professor Martin Hairer and wrote the interview for a general audience. Published in Exchanges: the Warwick Research Journal, October 2015 here
Maths Busking at Leamington Peace festival
Leamington Spa Food and Drink Festival, 'Food glorious food' stand. Talk: "Food - the web that connect us all" 6th September 2014.
Maths Busking at Leamington Peace festival in June 2014
Cafe Scientfique, Leamington Spa Monday 19th May 2014 "UK food security in the twenty-first century" here
Maths Busking at Leamington Peace festival on June 15th 2013
I took a second Maths Busking training course in March 2012 with science busking expert David Price from Science Made Simple.
Leamington Peace festival on June 18th 2011, (see Programme: campaigns, Saturday).
Live interviews on Coventry & Warwickshire radio June 18th, July 18th and 8th August 2011
I was part of a team maths Busking at Manchester Science Festival on 23rd October 2011 Manchester Science festival 2011.
In 2011 I was set up producer for a science magazine radio show.
- IMA Public engagement Conference, Manchester
"For the conference dinner activity, each table was given four cards with awkward questions that were representative of the difficult questions mathematicians often face from many different people who dislike or fear mathematics. The most entertaining answer of the evening was the reply to ' A radio show presenter asks - I have never used Algebra, why did I have to learn it at school?' "
Read our response here: Mathematics Today
- Radio magazine shows
I was interviewed by Paul Chleboun for a science magazine radio show in 2010.