This non-profit organisation is supporting knowledge exchange between researchers and laymen. By introducing several different projects such as scientific night cafés, science slams or changing so-called science years its aim is to make science more understandable. As a PhD student you can participate in science slams or apply for the Communicator Award, which honours masterful scientific communication. The website gives an overview of the existing projects, mostly in German though.
Klaus Tschira Award for Comprehensible Sciences
Being able to write vividly and to express oneself in plain terms not only to colleagues, but also to a general audience: these are the competencies important for the jury of the "Klaus Tschira Preis", which explicitly is addressed to junior scientists. International PhD students are welcome to apply, however the application piece is written in German.
Visit the Website (German Only)
Deutscher Studienpreis of the Körber Foundation
This scientific contest is open to everyone who has already gained the doctoral degree with an outstanding result. The award is highly remunerated (€ 100,000 in total). As an international PhD, you are free to hand in an dissertation in English, but the application piece as well as the abstract have to be written in German.
enter website (German Only)
The German Research Foundation (DFG) and the Donors' Association for the Promotion of Sciences and Humanities in Germany are yearly advertising the Communicator Award with a prize money of € 50,000 and recognizing the work of scientists who have successfully transferred research findings to the public.
You only have three minutes for presenting your research topic to an expert jury and a non-scientist audience. Are you able to make it understandable for everyone? Science Slams can be an experience to find other ways of communicating about your work and offer a stage to use creativity in a field that is dominated by research works and technical language.
enter website Fame Lab
For US-American PhD students this idea might appear very similar to the "Dance Your PhD" contest which has been very successful in the United States. Last year, the Museum of Man (Deutsches Hygiene-Museum) fired the starting pistol for introducing "Dancing Science" to Germany.
Scientists were asked to present their research topic by performing a dance in order to reject technical language and explain sophisticated relations in a funny and easy way. More Information
Lol My Thesis
Lolmythesis.com is a blog initiated by a student of biology, Angela Frankel, and aims to oversimplify the findings of research works. The result very often turns out to be funny, since it sets one short sentence against years of research and difficult scientific language. One example: "I killed a bunch of zebrafish embryos and shot lasers at them to figure out were a protein was. It's everywhere."
From the lab to the stage
Science is really cool, but that is something you already know. How about presenting your research in public? The challenge is packing all your findings in 10 minutes in an exciting, dynamic and illustrative lecture! That's a science slam! Young scientists leave their labs and lecture halls and present their own research projects on stage in clubs, theaters and pubs all over Germany. There are many ways to participate. Learn more about them.
Science Slam (English)
Science Slam Germany (German)