Shorten, shorten, shorten!
Less is often more. This also applies to press releases on scientific topics. Scientific authors often tend to use long and convoluted sentence constructions that cause more confusion than clarity - which is why the first writing tip "Shorten, shorten, shorten!" is dedicated to this phenomenon.
"The writer (...) must constantly ask: what am I trying to say? Surprisingly often they don't know." (William Zinsser in "On Writing Well")
There are serious differences between the scientific writing style and a style that journalists and the media like to adopt, and researchers are often only practiced in scientific writing. Therefore, Florian Skrabal and Georg Eckelsberger (DOSSIER) have analyzed the media-effective communication of research projects and prepared the best tips and tricks especially for researchers.
How long should a press release be in order to be read? What content should I use to attract the attention of the press? When is the best time to contact a journalist?
More information about the trainers and DOSSIER can be found here.
6th Writing Workshop, 21.+22.09.2022 in Vienna
After great interest in a longer writing workshop in previous years, the 6th CCCA WRITING WORKSHOP took place for the first time on two days, Wednesday, September 21, and Thursday, September 22, 2022, both from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm, at BOKU in the Ilse Walentinhaus, in Vienna.
Out of 23 originally registered participants from different CCCA member organizations (BOKU, IIASA, JKU Linz, MUL, TU Wien, Uni Graz, WU Wien, ZAMG), 20 finally took part in the two days. The extension to two days was all around welcomed and well accepted. As in previous years, after an introduction to the media landscape and activities, intensive work was done on storytelling and the "translation" of a scientific text into general texts and texts tailored to individual target groups. In addition, work sent in advance to the editors was discussed in practice and optimized.
In the coming years, the CCCA writing workshop will also be offered as a two-day event in order to enable a more in-depth examination of the content!
5th Writing Workshop, 10.11.2021 in Vienna
After a one-year Covid-related break, the 5th CCCA WRITING WORKSHOP took place on Wednesday, November 10, 2021, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm at BOKU in the Ilse Walentinhaus, in Vienna.
Out of originally 20 registered interested parties from different CCCA member organizations (BOKU; IIASA, MUL, WU Wien, S4F), 14 young researchers finally participated in the full-day event. The feedback of the participants was very positive. After an introduction to the media landscape and activities, the participants worked intensively on storytelling and the "translation" of a scientific text into general texts and texts tailored to individual target groups. In addition, work sent in advance to the editors was discussed in practice and optimized.
With much interest, the participants were able to pick up the "tools" for successful "writing" and apply them to their texts in the future. In addition, the young scientists expressed the wish to extend the CCCA writing workshop to two days inorder to have even more time for questions, answers and practice. A continuation of the writing workshop next year is definitely planned!
4th Writing Workshop, 13.06.2019 in Salzburg
On June 3, 2019, the University of Salzburg was the last stop of the CCCA Writing Workshop for the time being, offering ten interested people from a wide range of university disciplines the opportunity to transform their skills in "translating" a scientific content into a text suitable for the media.
Even the anonymity of the author when excerpting the scientific texts could not hide the field from which he or she comes. In the end, the stylistic characteristics of a journalistic text were taken into account and were convertible for future press releases.
3rd Writing Workshop, 24.05.2018 in Graz
In cooperation with the editorial office of DOSSIER, the CCCA organized a workshop on dealing with journalists and media on May 24, 2018 in Graz. The venue this time was the Wegener Center of the University of Graz.
In addition to practical examples of the right writing style, the workshop also provided the nine participants with tips for successful publications: The trainers showed how to structure and write a press release in such a way that it attracts attention and is picked up by the media. Less is more and the right choice of words is what counts!
2nd writing workshop, 10.10.2017 in Innsbruck
In cooperation with the editorial office of DOSSIER, CCCA and alpS GmbH organized a workshop on dealing with journalists and media on October 10, 2017 in Innsbruck, in which ten participants from the fields of climate research and climate impact research took part.
What makes a good story? How do I get off to a gripping start? And how do I report excitingly on a supposedly dry topic? In the writing workshop, the instructors work together with the participants on the basics of journalistic writing and learn how to tell a gripping and comprehensible story.
In addition to practical examples of the right writing style, the workshop also provides tips for successful publications: The trainers show how to structure and write a press release in such a way that it attracts attention and is picked up by the media.
1st Writing Workshop, 25.05.2016 at BOKU Vienna
Twenty climate researchers from eight CCCA member institutions worked together with the DOSSIER editorial team for a day to hone the perfect press release. The heads were smoking and the keyboards were glowing - after an intensive day of writing training, the participants and the trainers returned to their research exhausted, but equipped with a lot of valuable information.
"I enjoyed the writing workshop very much. I was able to get some ideas from Georg and Florian and I think they gave a nice overview of journalistic (daily) events and many valuable tips. I can only welcome a continuation."
"I really, really enjoyed the writing workshop. Florian and Georg managed to teach the participants the very important tips and tricks regarding journalistic writingwithin a very short time. The day was exciting, entertaining and I was able to take away a lot for my work."
"I learned a lot that I can apply on a daily basis. I found all the content provided to be useful and meaningful, not only the tips for better writing but also the practical applications of how to contact the press."