I spent a really interesting and informative half-day yesterday helping judge the BA perspectives poster competition. The idea is that scientists and researchers think about the social and ethical implications and impacts of their work, make a poster about it and then stand for three half days talking to the public about it (and us judges!). The topics ranged from women consenting to share eggs to nano technology to body clocks to malaria. Walking round to speak to 10 of the entrants about their work and pressing them on their views and opinions made the posters really come alive.
I think I was coming at it very differently to some of the other judges (more glossy mag or train station, than academic conference), but that only made it more interesting... I somehow also ended up on the final moderating panel of four to help choose the winner and runners up, which meant another bite of the cherry with regards to seeing even more early career scientists displaying and talking about their work. I was pleased with the final decisions we made as a judging panel - I thought it reflected the balance of topics and quality of work well. And well done to all involved!