Imperial College London

Science Challenge success for Horizons alumna

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Anita with Professor Leroi

Anita Chandran's short story has won her the 2019 RCSU Science Challenge.

Horizons alumna and Physics PhD student, Anita Chandran, has scored a double victory in the RCSU Science Challenge with her excellent short story on Art and Artificial Intelligence. Her award - a trophy and £1,000 for the category and overall winner  - was presented at the Royal Society by Lord Winston.

Anita is a 2nd year Phd student in Physics and an alumna of the Imperial Horizons modules Advanced Creative Writing and the Advanced Humanities Project. She is currently working on a collection of short fiction on forgotten women in science and has also co-presented on women writing in science at the Advanced Studies Institute at UCL, alongside her Horizons lecturer,  Dr Aifric Campbell from the Centre for Languages, Culture and Communication. 

Speaker at Science Challenge Event

The Science Challenge is the Royal College of Science Union's annual science communication competition that invites entrants to demonstrate their skills in scientific debate and reasoning. It challenges today's young scientists to communicate the science that affects their lives. 

This year's judges - Lord Robert Winston, Lord Christopher Fox, Professor Armand Leroi and Dr Dalal Alrajeh - challenged participants to compose essays, fiction and videos about Artificial Intelligence and the Natural Sciences. The RCSU received submissions from all around the world and also had a large number of Imperial participants. 

Anita decided to participate in the Science Challenge because "the issues of AI, humanity and consciousness have always interested me as both a writer and a scientist. In my short story, I tried to examine the ways in which an artificial intelligence might experience emotions and relationships. It was definitely a challenge! I hope lots of others choose to get involved with the Science Challenge in future, because it’s a great way to think about science in a different context."

Anita with Professor Leroi

Anita's winning story will be published in the next edition of the RCSU magazine, Broadsheet.

Reporters

Aifric Campbell

Aifric Campbell
School of Professional Development

Cleo Bowen

Cleo Bowen
School of Professional Development