BBC journalist begins York Science Communicator residency

Matt McGrath, BBC contributor
Matt McGrath

Matt McGrath, environment correspondent at the BBC, has begun his three-month stay as the second Science Communicator in Residence in the Faculty of Science. He arrives on the heels of Kate Allen, science and technology reporter at the Toronto Star, who completed her residency last fall.

The York Science Communicator in Residence program launched in 2017 and is one-of-a-kind in Canada. It aims to recognize outstanding science journalists and communicators and to promote excellence in science-related communications.

“I love meeting scientists and hearing about their work, and the diverse range of subjects being studied at York means I am in for a very busy time,” said McGrath. “I believe that my experience as a journalist can be of some use to researchers keen to understand the workings of the modern media. While at York, I’m hoping to experiment with new digital forms of communication and to build links and connections with the science community that will last long into the future.”

As a resident in the program, McGrath will be immersed with researchers, students and staff at York’s Faculty of Science, where he will have the opportunity delve into the minds of eminent researchers and dig for rich, undiscovered science stories. Researchers at the Faculty of Science will also have a unique opportunity to learn from him on how to elevate their science communication skills.

More about Matt McGrath

As a BBC Science and Environment Correspondent, McGrath reports on some of the most difficult and challenging issues of our time for a global audience on the BBC News website, BBC World Service radio, and the BBC’s global TV outlets. He played a key role in the BBC coverage of global climate change negotiations through the years, from the failure of Copenhagen in 2009 to the success of Paris in 2015.

McGrath has also worked as a news anchor for World Service radio, made science documentaries for BBC Radio 4 and pioneered the use of mobile phones for reporting. He conducted in-depth investigations into controversial areas including cheating in carbon accounting and the use of drugs in sport.

McGrath was a 2010-2011 Knight Science Journalism Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Techology (MIT) and is a frequent guest speaker and panellist on environment and climate change issues. Originally from Tipperary, Ireland, McGrath was educated at University College Cork and Bournemouth University in the U.K. He got his start in journalism working on computer magazines such as PC Home and PC Today in the 1990s.