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Storytelling for Researchers (405)


18 and 19 April 2024

Lang EN Workshop language is English

Dr Samer Angelone


There have been great scientists that dropped out of school, but there have been no great scientists that did not tell stories! We seek to challenge, inspire and train scientists to use narrative techniques and strategies employed in film to produce persuasive presentations and publications. Borrowing communication strategies and techniques from filmmakers and applying them in science communication will help scientists for better communication of their research, and scientists are wise enough to do so!

I. In this workshop, researchers will learn storytelling techniques. This will help them to engage audience and increase uptake by incorporating narrative attributes into their teaching, divulgations and publications.

II. The desire of researchers to communicate elegantly with the general audience using storytelling, and the tireless search of filmmakers for good stories to tell, demand tight collaboration between researchers and filmmakers. Hence, the successful collaboration requires that researchers acquire the basic knowledge of film storytelling. This will allow them to translate their research into elegant and convincing cinematographic stories, thus enhancing the communication between them and filmmakers, and making it easier for the filmmaker to transform these stories into films.


Workshop content


  • Story and narrative, storytelling in science, documentary vs. fiction, documentary modes, and alternative narrative structures.


  • Participants will re-write the summaries of their already published (or in preparation) papers and presentations based on what they learn in the workshop.

The workshop will take place from 9 am to 1 pm at the University of Lausanne. In the afternoons, participants will have the opportunity to continue the work "in the field" at the Vision du Réel festival in Nyon ( Access to the festival will be available at a discounted and very advantageous rate, but it will not be refunded by CUSO.

Learning outcomes

After this course, participants are able to:

  • Build persuasive communication of their research, for divulgation and publication
  • Prepare a cinematographic stories and scripts about their research
  • Review, summarise and interpret films.


Preparatory/Transfer Work

Participants have to prepare two stories and one abstract!

Please send the trainer, at least 2 weeks before the workshop, the following:

  • Three lines telling a story about one of your research topics
  • Three lines telling a story about your biography
  • The summary of one of your recent publications/posters/presentations

(The amount of time expected: 1 hour)







University of Lausanne and Festival Vision du Réel


Date: Thursday 18th and Friday 19th April 2024

Place: University of Lausanne and Festival Vision du Réel (Nyon)

Schedule: 9 am to 1 pm (University of Lausanne) ; 2 pm to 6 pm (Festival Vision du Réel) - not mandatory


The Trainer:

Dr Samer Angelone is a biologist and filmmaker. He teaches 'Filmmaking for Scientists', 'Storytelling & Storyboarding Science', 'Filmmaking Marathon', and 'Video-Journalism for Scientists' at various Swiss universities and research institutes, and film festivals (e.g., Locarno Film Festival). He is the founder and director of the Global Science Film Festival in Switzerland (, and works as a jury-member for prestigious film festivals (e.g. Planet in Focus, Cinemambiente Film Festival). Angelone has directed several fiction and documentary films in Spain, Switzerland, and Kenya, mainly focusing on issues relating to science and the environment. He has developed scientific research on population genetics, diseases, forensics, wildlife conservation, social media, and human-elephant conflict. Angelone holds a PhD in population genetics, and master's degrees in film studies and film direction.




Participants are eligible for reimbursement of incurred travel expenses by train between the city of their university and the University of Lausanne (half-fare card, 2nd class). Please note that the travel expenses from the University of Lausanne to Nyon will not be refunded by CUSO.




Délai d'inscription 11.04.2024
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