2023 Agenda

All sessions are scheduled according to the United Arab Emirates local time – GMT+4

Opening Remarks

09:15 AM - 09:25 AM

7 science communication lessons we learned at SciComm X

09:25 AM - 09:45 AM

Speakers: Saad Lotefy

Session Type: Hybrid – Short Presentation

Science, Islam and the Imagination

09:45 AM - 10:30 AM

In this session, Dr. Jörg Matthias will cover topics like futuristic megaprojects in the Arab world and Islamic science fiction. Participants will learn how Islamic scripture and history have enabled rather than constrained the imagination of new worlds.

Speakers: Jörg Matthias Determann

Session Type: Hybrid – Keynote

Break & Refreshments

10:30 AM - 10:45 AM

Research Communication Strategies (Academia)

10:45 AM - 11:30 AM

This panel will feature the research communication activities that help universities disseminate their research and discoveries to a wider audience. We will have representatives from leading universities in UAE to share their experiences and how they tackle this.

Speakers: Leon Yousif Barkho, Suzanne Condie Lambert, Rawdha Rashed Almansoori, Saad Lotefy

Session Type: Hybrid – Panel Discussion

Scientists as Communicators

11:30 AM - 12:15 PM

The panel discussion will explore how scientists communicate research to various audiences such as the public, policymakers, and industry. Panelists will share their experiences and insights on strategies to effectively communicate complex scientific concepts. The discussion aims to encourage scientists to engage in public communication to increase support for scientific research.

Speakers: Ilias Fernini, Enas Qudeimat, Mohamed Elsonbaty

Session Type: Hybrid – Panel Discussion

“Land of Cement”.. A Cinematic Example for a Human Centric Environmental Story

12:15 PM - 01:00 PM

The film tells the story of a Palestinian Bedouin family who took refuge from Beersheba, and currently resides on the outskirts of Amman, Jordan. The film presents, through three generations, a contradiction on two levels: at the family level between the grandfather, the son, and the little girl, and the desire of each of them to belong to a different environment, and the contradiction on the other hand between urbanization and nomadism, so that the goal becomes: survival of the strongest and most fit. In this session, we will hold a quick discussion of the film that is still being filmed, and learn about the different methods of presenting the humanitarian environmental film.

Speakers: Samya Ayish

Session Type: Hybird – Discussion session

Lunch Break

01:00 PM - 02:00 PM

How is media tackling the environment and sustainability?

02:00 PM - 02:45 PM

This session brings together a group of experienced editors who have dedicated their careers to covering climate change, environmental degradation, and sustainable development. They will share their insights on the challenges and opportunities that media faces in reporting on these critical topics, including the role of journalism in raising public awareness and promoting positive change.

Speakers: Bothina Osama, Chantal Saliba, Ayman Shabaan​, Mohamed Elsonbaty

Session Type: Hybird – Panel Discussion

Getting Ready for COP28

02:45 PM - 03:45 PM

This panel will feature representatives from various sectors, including government, public, private, and media. They will discuss the preparations and expectations for the upcoming UNFCCC Conference of Parties COP 28, with a focus on science-based communication strategies to accelerate the transition to a sustainable, low-carbon future. The discussion aims to provide insights and recommendations for effectively communicating the urgency of climate action to different audiences and mobilizing support for ambitious climate policies.

Speakers: Ied Shukur Alnidawi, Rahaf Ajaj, Maya Haddad, Suzan Shahin

Session Type: Hybird – Panel Discussion

Break & Refreshments

03:45 PM - 04:00 PM

Health Communication Strategies and Public Awareness

04:00 PM - 04:45 PM

The panel will discuss effective communication strategies for promoting public health and raising awareness about various health issues. Panelists will explore the use of traditional and social media, community engagement, and other strategies to inform the public about health risks and preventive measures. The discussion aims to provide recommendations for developing effective health communication strategies to improve public health outcomes.

Speakers: Basema Saddik, Gabriel Andrade, Priya KanaysonNouha Belaid

Session Type: Hybird – Panel Discussion

Future of science journalism in the Arab region: Challenges and opportunities

04:45 PM - 05:15 PM

Speakers: Bothina Osama

Session Type: Hybird – Keynote

Closing Remarks

05:15 PM - 05:30 PM

How to develop hands-on Activities

11:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Speakers: Mohamed Soliman

Session Type: Virtual- Workshop

Break & Refreshments

12:30 AM - 12:45 AM

Environmental tools for journalists

12:45 AM - 02:15 PM

In this workshop, we will discover how Google unified its practice, partnerships and products around a single mission- to foster sustainability (Maps, Travel, Shopping, etc.) We will also explore environmental tools like the Environmental Insights Explorer, Global Water Watch or Global Forest Watch that help us uncover the changes in our world.

Speakers: Pamela Kesrouani

Session Type: Virtual- Workshop

A Data-Driven Approach to climate investigation

02:15 PM - 03:45 PM

In this captivating workshop, participants will learn about the sources of data in climate investigations, how to extract data from PDF files and convert it into Excel for analysis purposes, as well as how to visually represent data using Flourish and Data Wrapper. Additionally, the workshop will help participants understand the different forms and nature of data.

Speakers: Eman Mounir

Session Type: Virtual- Workshop

Break & Refreshments

03:45 PM - 04:00 PM

Using artificial intelligence, generate and enhance journalistic tales

04:00 PM - 05:00 PM

In this workshop, participants will explore the opportunities and challenges of using artificial intelligence for generating and enhancing news stories, as well as the limits of automated journalism.

The workshop will cover topics such as natural language generation, automatic summarization, sentiment analysis, and provide hands-on experience using AI-powered tools like GPT-4 and Hugging Face’s Transformers. Participants will also learn about the capabilities and limitations of stories created by artificial intelligence and explore the ethical considerations of using this technology in journalism.

Additionally, they will learn how to integrate AI-generated and/or enhanced stories into their newsroom workflows and how to use these techniques to improve storytelling. Finally, during the workshop, participants will work on developing a specific news story (generated or enhanced) and present it to the group at the end of the session.

Speakers: Amal El Mekki

Session Type: Virtual- Workshop

Solutions Journalism as the key to fixing the broken relationship with the society

05:00 PM - 05:50 PM

Speakers: Hamoud Almahmoud

Session Type: Virtual- Workshop

Reporting on Mental Health (DW Akademie)

06:00 PM - 07:30 PM

In this session, we will present a simplified scientific explanation of key concepts related to mental health and highlight important global statistics on suicide and depression. The workshop will further explore a range of recommendations for journalists to consider when covering mental health topics in the Arab world. These recommendations aim to assist journalists in delivering accurate and responsible information, thereby avoiding negative impacts on individuals and society.

Speakers: Asma Zribi, Malek Guetat

Session Type: Virtual- Workshop

Your way to telling scientific stories in sound

11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Everything either has its science or backed by science. and when it comes to media, logic comes first. but which or who’s logic? let’s discuss this together.

Topics will be discussed in this session:
– The road to the 1st episode and beyond
– How to know an episode is good? Or that “the recipe” is balanced?
– Quick wins?

What to expect
Having a better sense of what “your way” sounds like

Q&A hint
Prioritize 1-3 topics to ask about either by reflecting on your work/trials, the talk, or any of my three podcasts.

Speakers: Omar Noureldin

Session Type: Virtual – Short presentation

Break & Refreshments

11:30 AM - 11:45 AM

The coverage of COP28: Map of alliances and agendas

11:45 AM - 12:35 PM

What are the current alliances among Arab nations and developing countries, and will these allegiances shift in the near future? Which issues have reached a consensus, which are still up for debate, and which remain points of contention? And in light of the global economic turmoil, has there been any recent development regarding climate financing?

Speakers: Rehab Abd Almohsen, Hesham Issa

Session Type: Virtual – Panel Discussion

Break & Refreshments

12:35 PM - 12:45 PM

How to Presenting a Science Book to the Public

12:45 PM - 01:15 PM

In that session, Alyaa will discuss her book ‘Stigma,’ which is a collection of human stories about individuals living with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV/AIDS). The book provides scientific information about the virus, including its discovery, transmission methods, prevention strategies, the availability of vaccines, and other scientific details.

She will also share her experience of presenting a book that delivers scientific content to the general public, explaining how she prepared and formulated the material in a simplified and easily understandable manner.

Speakers:  Alyaa Abo shahba

Session Type: Virtual – Short presentation

Methods for countering climate change disinformation in the Arab World

01:15 PM - 01:45 PM

Misinformation about climate change has been spreading intensively on Arabic social media platforms for years. To combat this issue, the specialized climate platform, Ozone, has taken the lead in establishing the first observatory dedicated to combating misleading information about climate change in the Arab region. The primary aim of this initiative is to immunize the Arab audience against the prevalent tactics of deception across various Arabic platforms.

In this session, we will discuss the five common tactics of deception and explore how journalists and media professionals can uncover and confront them. Our goal is to present the facts to the Arab audience and empower them to identify deception on their own in the future.

Moreover, we will examine the ways in which these tactics are used before annual climate conferences to influence decision-makers who gather to advance climate action, specifically in preparation for COP28 in Dubai. Additionally, we will address methods for verifying scientific information on climate change and selecting appropriate and reliable expert scientific sources to debunk rumors and provide authenticated information.

Finally, we will discuss the approaches that journalists and media professionals should follow to provide responsible coverage of climate change issues without falling into the trap of sensationalism.

Speakers:  Ahmed Shawky Al-Attar

Session Type: Virtual – Short presentation

Break & Refreshments

01:45 PM - 02:00 PM

From scientific writing to documentaries – personal experience

02:00 PM - 02:30 PM

In that session, Dalia will share her personal experience with us: how she, as a traditional scientific journalist, was influenced by the evident impact of technological advancements on traditional journalism and how she became a comprehensive journalist and a documentary filmmaker whose works are showcased in international festivals.

She will also discuss several important points, such as:

The significance of documentaries in spreading knowledge and recording our reality, which contributes to finding realistic solutions for various economic and political problems. Visuals in our current era are worth more than a thousand words.
The changing roles of scientific journalists after significant developments and the threats faced by the media in recent times, transitioning to the role of a comprehensive journalist or a one-person crew.
How a scientific journalist takes their first steps in scriptwriting, production, and directing.

Speakers:  Dalia Elakkad

Session Type: Virtual – Short presentation

International Fellowship in Journalism – Learning and Networking Opportunity

02:30 PM - 03:30 PM

In this session, speakers will share their expertise and tips for journalists interested in applying for intensive fellowships in media and science communication, helping them increase their acceptance opportunities.

During the session, we will explore several key topics, including:

– The importance of applying for fellowships and grants in the fields of media and science communication.
– How to increase your chances of acceptance in these fellowships and grants?
– What are the most important international fellowships available for journalists and professionals in the field of media and scientific communication? And what are the courses and training materials offered by various institutions in the field?

Moreover, we will explore how you can prepare to cover the sessions and make the most of the fellowship experience by networking with other journalists, in case you are accepted as a fellow.

Speakers: Summer Ashraf, Nehal Lasheen, Mohamed Elsonbaty, Hadeer Elhadary

Session Type: Virtual – Panel Discussion

Break & Refreshments

03:30 PM - 04:15 PM

The significance of sustainability influencers in educating young people about climate change and sustainability

04:15 PM - 04:45 PM

In this session, Monia will share with us a working paper on sustainability influencers on Instagram, along with a proposal to utilize their influence in educating youth and teenagers about climate change.

Speakers: Monia Isaak

Session Type: Virtual – Short presentation

Why might we encourage the absence of scientific evidence for medical content on the Internet?

04:45 PM - 05:15 PM

Is it always useful for medical content online to include scientific evidence? Is it necessary for the scientific evidence to be documented medical research relied upon by the content creator? Noha discusses this idea from the perspective of 12 influential Egyptian doctors and medical content creators, who provide reasons for the scarcity of references and sources in their blog posts.

The research paper is published in English in the Journal of Health and New Media Research (peer-reviewed).

You can access the paper here: https://www.hnmr.org/m/journal/view.php?number=52

Speakers: Noha Atef

Session Type: Virtual – Short presentation

Science Media and Communication Careers: Meet the Experts

06:00 PM - 06:50 PM

There are diverse career paths in the fields of media and science communication, filled with numerous opportunities and challenges. In this session, we will explore these career paths and delve into the available opportunities and the potential challenges you may encounter. We are delighted to welcome distinguished experts from various Arab countries specializing in scientific awareness, digital media, content creation, public relations, and academic research.

Speakers: Malak Makki, Mohamed Soliman Daoud, Banan ElBanna, Mohamed Elsonbaty

Session Type: Virtual – Panel Discussion