Jessamyn A. Fairfield

Lecturer, School of Natural Sciences, NUI Galway

Ph.D. Physics, University of Pennsylvania (2011)
M.S. Physics, University of Pennsylvania (2009)
B.A. Physics and Applied Math, University of California Berkeley (2005)

What kind of projects am I working on?

I run Bright Club Ireland, the variety night for lateral minds where researchers use stand-up comedy to communicate their work to the public. We wrote a paper about it for Science Communication where you can read more about the approach, and more research is on the way. I also wrote and hosted You’re Up Next, a podcast where we delve into why using humour helps in exploring even the most technically and emotionally challenging topics.

I’m on the faculty for Homeward Bound, a ground-breaking leadership programme for women working in STEM. I was part of the 4th cohort of participants, and now I am teaching visibility and science communication to 100 amazing women from around the world in the 7th cohort. I’ve also previously worked with the Mawazo Institute and Soapbox Science to help women in STEM upskill in order to lead for the greater good.

I have also recently collaborated with choreographer Deidre Cavazzi on two science/dance projects, NanoDance and CONDUIT. We met on the Arctic Circle science/art residency program, and co-wrote a piece on why art and science must stand as partners in the face of great challenges.

Some recent papers…

  1. A. Cardinot, V. McCauley, J. Fairfield “Designing physics board games: a practical guide for educators” Physics Education, 57 (3), 035006, 2022.
  2. A. Cardinot, J. Fairfield “Alternative conceptions of astronomy: how Irish secondary students understand Gravity, Seasons, and the Big Bang” EURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 17 (4), em1950, 2021.
  3. J. Roche, J. Fairfield, A. Gallagher, L. Bell “Bright Club: Establishing a Science Comedy Variety Night in Ireland” Science Communication, 42(1), 130, 2020.

Full CV available on request. Also on Google Scholar.