News blog spreads KTH research
The Stockholm Technology Blog is a new, start-up blog by KTH's international press secretary, David Callahan. Why are you doing it?
As a publicist for the university, I distribute news releases to the international media. We see a demand for content that complements the news with different perspectives and a more human, engaging tone than news writing. This way we can tell more of the story of the institution, as well as the story of the research.
What is the idea behind it?
T he Stockholm Technology Blog goes a little further into these individual stories about research here, and sheds light on what’s special about KTH — the research environment, the people and the values here. We also highlight ideas that aren’t part of any press release, but that deserve some context and some discussion nevertheless. I’m publishing some multimedia, that is, video, slide presentations, data, whatever scientists here would like to spread to the community outside of KTH. So this is a companion piece to the news flow, but it’s not necessarily the news. It’s content that is crafted in order to remain relevant for a long time. And it’s told from my perspective as a journalist, not from KTH’s perspective, so it’s more relaxed than official news releases.
What do you hope to achieve?
I hope people share what they find. That we reach researchers and others who are interested in KTH, as well as those who don’t know anything about KTH but would benefit from having a little better familiarity. Also there are specific web communities, organised around various interests, that we proactively engage with. This isn’t a passive blog. Nor is the content we produce meant to have a short shelf life, like a news release. It’s our hope that it lives on in the “long tail” of information. I also hope that researchers here know that they can come to me with suggestions for the blog. I’m ready to hear from anybody about anything. And I like Q&A, so if you want to talk freely about what you’ve got going on, I’m your guy.
Why should someone read the blog?
If they are at all interested in technology and engineering solutions for sustainability, health, economic growth, quality of life, then they can go to a lot of blogs besides this one. But what they’ll get here that’s different is a discussion that draws on some of Stockholm’s — and the Nordics’— finest minds and most cutting-edge research. As I said, KTH is a unique place, and Stockholm is a completely different environment than any other city, and we need to do what we can to bring that message to world attention.
Do you have any favorite blogs?
Pete Wilton’s Oxford Science Blog is a nice one. He does some nice Q&A pieces, going beyond the news release format and into much more engaging territory. Media Matters for America is one I’m addicted to, just because I like good media criticism. I’m also a sucker for Heather Havrilesky’s Mad Men blog on Salon.