The committee is delighted to introduce three highly respected scientists who have agreed to be patrons for NatSCA. All are skilled communicators and strong advocates for the importance and incredible value of natural science collections.
Professor Alice Roberts
"Sometimes I think objects in museum collections are thought of as being only of historical interest. But natural science collections are not only valuable for their history; they also represent a vast source of new information for contemporary researchers. Not only that, but the objects in these collections hold the potential to inspire a new generation of natural scientists. I'm delighted to be a patron of NatSCA."
Alice Roberts is the Professor of Public Engagement in Science at the University of Birmingham. Alice has written four popular science books about anatomy and human evolution. She has presented several science documentaries on the BBC, including Horizon episodes, The Incredible Human Journey, and Ice Age Giants.
Professor Iain Stewart
“Museums are more than mere time capsules - the displays, the specialists, even the buildings, are windows that throw light on how we see and make sense of the world around us. The collections are the keys to unlocking that. Through them we come close to places – and to times – that are otherwise exotic and distant. Dry labelled specimens spill out narratives and tales about scientific discovery that are too easily lost in the formal classroom. Through them, you can genuinely revel in the wonder of Nature and Science.”
Iain Stewart is the Professor of Geosciences Communication at Plymouth University. Iain’s main interests lie with geological natural hazards, in particular communicating the effects of these to people who may be affected. He has presented several science documentaries on the BBC, including Horizon episodes, How the Earth Made Us, and Rise of the Continents.
'Museums act as passports, permitting visitors to access a world which would otherwise only be available to few. They are hubs of diversity and each one allows us not only an invaluable glimpse into the past but also an exciting peek into the future. The days where museums were quiet sanctuaries for the educated and wealthy are thankfully gone and have been replaced by exciting, vibrant and dynamic havens of learning, inspiration and fun.'
Ben Garrod is an evolutionary biologist and broadcaster. His research focuses mainly on island evolution in primates. He has presented the award-winning BBC series 'Secrets of Bones' and is a regular presenter on the One Show. Museums and their collections feature heavily in Ben's research and TV work and increasingly, in his free time.