Science communication and public engagement​

If you have a flair for communication, there is a range of opportunities for pharmacologists in scientific and medical publishing, communications and public engagement. ​

Medical communications​

You could work in the pharmaceutical industry as a medical writer, preparing dossiers of clinical evidence to support drug development.​

Science communications and engagement​

You could help people understand the importance and impact of biomedical research by translating complex scientific concepts into plain language for patients and the general public, to inspire, engage and involve them with research.​

Scientific publishing​

There are many roles in publishing for graduates with BSc and higher degrees, from assistant editors who help to finesse scientific articles, to more senior roles using your scientific expertise to make independent editorial decisions. ​

Science journalism​

Science journalists communicate complex scientific subjects to a broad audience to improve public understanding of science and research.​

​To work in any of these fields, you are likely to require a BSc in a scientific discipline. You will also need excellent communication skills.​

To help you pursue a career in a science communication or medical writing you can:​

  •  Study for a Masters in Science Communications ​
  • Write a science-based blog ​
  • Contribute to science magazines, such as Pharmacology Matters
  • Contribute to local or national press​
  • Enter scientific writing competitions such as the Max Perutz prize​

It is a good idea to create a portfolio of your publications to showcase your work to potential employers.​

Organisations that offer roles in science and medical writing include:​

  • Learned societies ​
  • Biomedical research charities​
  • Scientific magazines and journals​
  • Local or national newspaper or media groups​
  • Pharmaceutical companies​
  • Medical communication agencies​

If you are interested in pursuing a career in science communications and public engagement, why not start gaining experience now by writing for our  magazine, Pharmacology Matters, or our blog?

Dr Joanna Owens 

Dr-Joanna-Owens-(1).jpgJoanna Owens is a freelance science writer, editor, and communications consultant running her own business. Following a Masters and PhD in pharmacology and toxicology, Joanna gained experience in publishing, working as a Senior editor at Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, and in science communication through different roles at Cancer Research UK. She then started her own science communications company.

"I love the variety and flexibility of my job. You never know what fascinating project someone is going to approach you about next, and there is always something new to learn."

Read more about Joanna's career path