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Dr Emma Yhnell, from Cardiff University’s Neuroscience and Mental Health Research Institute, will be competing against eight other finalists at this year’s FameLab UK final, taking place at Cheltenham Science Festival on 3 June.
FameLab was set up in 2005 by Cheltenham Festivals in partnership with NESTA to discover and celebrate scientists and engineers with a talent for public engagement. Since 2007, in partnership with the British Council, FameLab has also gone global, running in over thirty countries across Europe, USA, Asia and Africa. More than seven thousand researchers have participated in FameLab international so far.
The competition is made up of three stages. Entrants start by taking part in regional heats and finals. Having won the Welsh regional competition, Emma is through to the UK final. The winner will then take part in the international semi-finals on 5 June, competing with twenty five finalists for a place in the International final taking place a day later.
Emma said: “As a scientist I believe that communicating our research to the public is vital, after all, the majority of research is funded by the tax payer, and health related research has a direct impact on real people.
“I entered FameLab as it sounded like a fantastic challenge, having to explain a scientific topic in just three minutes. This isn’t very long and I had never done anything like it before. I have really enjoyed developing my pitches and props for the first rounds of the competition where I focused on genetics and neurotransmission.
“I am absolutely thrilled to be in the UK finals and I’m looking forward to developing a new idea to present. I hope that I can do Wales proud in the Final of the competition.”