How to pay for safety

2018 April 4 April 14:46

If professional information/advice is available freely, why join (i.e. pay membership fees) the professional entity that distributes such free information? Can professional organisations survive by altruistic membership donations?

A recent announcement by the Association for Science Education (ASE) for new members of a specialist interest group (ASE Health & Safety) prompted further thought: how to share best practice whilst being sustainable financially?

In a digital world where the marginal cost of distribution of information is negligible, is the preparation of a new book beneficial? Necessary? Should professional organisations use platforms such as Bookboon to develop content sponsored by companies, in this case educational equipment suppliers? There are some interesting topics in laboratory safety to contribute to, but who ultimately benefits from proprietary content? More people should adopt creative commons and free software philosophies to the licensing of content. Admittedly, it is more risky to rely on the altruism of people to donate membership fees, instead of selling membership via the promise of access to content "exclusive to members", but we are living in a new world.

Revision and/or study apathy

2018 April 22 April 18:05

At this time of the year, students are supposed to be in revision mode. Unfortunately, as commented elsewhere, this is not necessarily the case. This week, students have been AWOL, assignments ignored, generally not motivated; all very depressing. Then the first bit of warm weather and attitude becomes even more lackadaisical. What to do? Answers on a postcard please! :)