Dr Noel-Ann Bradshaw selected as General Scientific Section President at British Science Festival

Dr Bradshaw’s Presidential address, The Lady with the Maths, will explore Florence Nightingale’s work within statistics and data visualisation techniques.

Date: 6 July 2021

London Met's Dr Noel-Ann Bradshaw, Head of the School of Computing and Digital Media, has been selected as General Scientific Section President at the 2021 British Science Festival.

Since the foundation of the British Science Festival, the BSA's Sections have played a crucial role in both developing Festival content and advising on the most relevant topics in their subject areas.

Comprised of science professionals, the 17 Scientific Sections contribute to the Festival's events and arrange activities such as talks, installations and debates, encompassing all topics: from the physical, natural and social sciences to history and science & the arts.

Each year, the Sections nominate an individual who has made a significant contribution to their scientific field for Presidency of the Section. They are also invited to give their Presidential Address at the British Science Festival in September to mark the start of this role. 

Dr Bradshaw's Presidential Address, The Lady with the Maths, explores Florence Nightingale's work within statistics, how she pioneered data visualisation techniques such as infographics, and the long-lasting contributions she has had to modern-day medicine.

Her abstract explains: "Nightingale, one of the most influential women, and nurses, in British history, turned 200 in 2020. Celebrated as a pioneer in nursing and social reform, her lesser-known achievements in mathematics were also ground-breaking.

"In fact, her mathematical work informed much of her nursing practices. For example, through meticulous record keeping, she was able to provide statistical evidence that poor hospital conditions contributed to patients' deaths.

"Such techniques were an extension of her wider social work, with some of her published writing on medical knowledge written in simple English to reach people with poor reading skills."

The British Science Festival is Europe's longest-standing science Festival, travelling to a different place in the United Kingdom each year. The Festival aims to connect people with scientists, engineers, technologists and social scientists.

Each year, they bring an inspiring programme of free events to the public over four or five days, bursting with exciting opportunities to get involved in. Their talks, workshops and drop-in events span a diverse range of subjects that encompass science in the broadest sense, promising something for everyone.

The British Science Festival 2020 was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and has now been rescheduled to take place in Chelmsford from 7 – 11 September 2021, hosted by Anglia Ruskin University. 

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