Faculty and energy researchers from across the UT Austin campus delivered a crash course on hot-button energy topics to reporters, editors, and producers who regularly cover energy issues during the first UT Energy Journalism Workshop, Jan. 11 – 12, 2016.
The two-day event featured presentations and panel discussions from some of the world’s leading energy researchers on a variety of issues, including the latest trends in sustainable building practices, risks and benefits associated with hydraulic fracturing, conversion of nuclear waste into fuel, the rapidly evolving electric grid, and other hot-button topics. The format for the workshop encouraged questions, interactive discussions, and networking among participants.
A total of 30 journalists from assorted news outlets attended the workshop, including the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, NPR’s Marketplace Sustainability desk, US News & World Report, Popular Science and Earth magazines, most of Texas’ daily newspapers and business journals, and several energy trade publications.
The event, co-hosted by the University’s Energy Institute, School of Journalism, and the KBH Center for Energy, Law & Business, was designed to showcase the depth of expertise among University faculty and researchers in various fields of study and energy-related topics, and to provide journalists covering energy issues direct access to academic experts in an informal setting.
More than two dozen researchers from schools, colleges and research centers across campus participated in the workshop, including engineering and geosciences, law and public policy, natural sciences, communications, and business. Journalists also toured two tours of campus facilities involved in energy-related research – the UTEX Culture Collection of Algae and the TACC Visualization Lab.
Though workshop organizers did not explicitly pitch news stories to attendees, material presented by researchers was ‘on the record’ and has generated several news stories immediately following the event, including articles in the New York Times, US News & World Report, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the San Antonio Express-News, and Megawatt Daily.
For more on the first UT Energy Journalism Workshop, read the event program.