Scientifically Speaking

Jo Filshie Browning

Publication date: June 8, 2021

£24.99 exc. VAT

SKU: 9781788602785 Category:



Now more than ever, the scientific and medical community is under the microscope and in front of the media. Science matters, and in a post-truth world it’s more important than ever for scientists and physicians to be heard.

But there’s a challenge. To get people to listen, you can’t communicate in writing alone anymore. You need to speak up and be seen – on stage, online, and on camera. To do this well you need to master the art of influential speaking, which is something you weren’t taught at university or medical school.

This book teaches you how to become a compelling scientific speaker so that you can put your message across with confidence and clarity, both online and in person. It’s written by a speaking coach with 25 years of experience in science communications.

Part One shows how speaking can help you to win the war of attention, benefiting both your field and your career.

Part Two explains how to craft your scientific message in a way that connects with your audience and achieves your goal. Including how to be memorable, handle the Q&A, and communicate risk.

Part Three gives you a tool kit for speaking with energy and conviction in all types of situations. These include virtual channels, which are particularly important in the post-COVID era.

Jo Browning is the Founder and Managing Director of Filshie Browning Associates, and its Principle Consultant. She has 25 years of experience in verbal communication skills, and helps scientists and physicians to improve their content, competence, and confidence, so that they can communicate with impact and authority. This enables them to enhance their reputations and build more effective relationships with both their peers and others.

I was overjoyed when I came upon this book – scientifically speaking is such a brilliant and well needed read for every scientist and communicator of science. It’s definitely an area that is under taught yet so incredibly incredibly vital.

I’m a scientist – and I have to admit, I am woefully inadequate at disseminating and communicating my science to a lay audience/ to other scientists and it’s something I’ve always wanted to improve on. Being a Science communicator of ‘good science’ has never been more important, especially in an age where misinformation and media sensationalism are rife. There is so much to improve on here and it can only be started with knowing and understanding the benefits of sound science communication – enter this book!

All throughout my scientific career, training on how to communicate science has been rather lacking in that department somewhat and I’m not one of those people that is naturally blessed with the ability to do spurt science with effortless ease- the book definitely made me believe that I could actually do it and it’s not something many people are naturally blessed with. Everyone gets nervous when public speaking and the ones you see effortlessly performing to an audience has put the practice and the work in! This book will certainly help you to be on your way to joining the ranks of good science communicators.

I seriously learnt so much from this book and it was both enlightening and informative. Not gonna lie- I took notes! Pens and papers at the ready people. There are a lot of implementable factors here and an absolutely fantastic end chapter for things you can do to prepare, physically and vocally with exercises you can undertake too.

This book was fantastic in delivering brilliant nuggets of wisdom in a concise and easy to digest way. There are so many actionable and applicable ways you can apply this information to your life and I think everyone reading it will at least be able to get one great thing away that they’ve learnt.

It’s non-waffley and written in a great way- very easy to read and really uplifting when addressing a topic that is potentially terrifying such as public speaking! I also loved the fact that at the end of the chapter, there was a fab, succinct ‘main points’ section which further helps to drive home the main messages.

If you’re a scientist or in a related field, I seriously couldn’t recommend this book enough.


I was overjoyed when I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley, the author and the publisher in exchange for my honest review. I am not a scientist or a medical professional. I am more of an individual who loves to research on various topics such as literature, creativity and financial literacy. I thought this would be an ideal book to gain knowledge on expressing one’s research and ideas in a professional manner.

For someone who is not very comfortable talking to large groups or numbers of people about the work I do, this book really helped me face the fear and insecurities I have in a positive light. This book is a good starting point on being a better communicator and for learning better ways of expressing one’s ideas.

I learnt so much from this book and it was both enlightening and informative. My notebook is full of points I was taking down as I was reading this book and which I believe will really help me today and in the future as well.

The information presented is brief, concise and practical. There are so many actionable and applicable ways you can apply this information to your life and I think everyone reading it will learn something from it.


Scientifically Speaking is a short book that aims to help scientists become better at communicating their science to a wider audience. The book is about 140 pages, divided into three parts, with eleven total chapters. The main points are summarized in bullet point form at the end of each chapter, for a nice quick review, or if you want to skip around and get an idea of what each chapter contains.

Part One explains why having a coordinated and comprehensive plan for communicating your science to a wider public audience is so important. The general point is that in today’s social media-driven age, it is no longer sufficient to simply publish your results in the elite scientific journals if you really want to make an impact. Your ability to reach a wider audience is key, and can also affect your individual career success. Examples of good science communicators like Brian Cox are used to show the importance of being able to explain your research clearly, and in terms that the general public can easily understand.

This book does a great job of illustrating the difference between the way news stories are usually presented to the public, and the way science has traditionally been communicated within the scientific community. Browning then provides a specific list of steps to take to identify your audience and carefully create a strategy to effectively communicate your ideas to them while avoiding confusion. There are chapters about handling Q&A sessions, carefully communicating risk and statistics, and even maintaining high energy and projecting confidence.

Overall this seems like some excellent advice from someone that has correctly identified a big problem: that many scientists are not well trained in the art of communicating their science to the public. These specific steps and strategies should be a valuable resource for anyone in the scientific community that wants to fix this problem, and start to become better at bringing their scientific knowledge to a wider audience.


Scientifically Speaking offers a concise and no-nonsense guide to presenting scientific information. As a corporate data scientist who has to present statistical information to colleagues and company leadership without putting anybody to sleep, I found the book’s advice clear and easy to apply.


It is more important than ever for scientists to be heard and master the art of influential speaking – but this is rarely if ever taught in science-based university courses. Educators must consider training in the many facets of science communication in their courses, but until then, this concise book will help

The Biologist

Additional information

Publication date





Number of pages



234 x 156 x 12 mm