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July 6, 2009

Public Radio International Collaboration Well Under Way

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC - Last August, Public Radio International (PRI), in collaboration with Sigma Xi, received a $2.1 million grant from the National Science Foundation to develop groundbreaking coverage and engagement with science and technology.

The partnership is now well under way, and Sigma Xi and PRI's news program The World are proud to present a weekly science podcast, associated Web site and interactive online science discussions with expert hosts.

The World's new weekly science podcast debuted in February. Every Friday, it features in-depth science coverage from BBC and PRI reporters, as well as a weekly chat between program host David Kohn and Sigma Xi's Elsa Youngsteadt that touches on a potpourri of other science news.

Kohn formerly covered health and medicine for the Baltimore Sun and has freelanced for the New York Times and the Christian Science Monitor, among others. He has been a Nieman Fellow in Global Health and an International Reporting Project Fellow.

Youngsteadt recently completed a Ph.D. in entomology. She is Sigma Xi's new programs manager. Her journalism experience includes a AAAS Mass Media Fellowship, Science Magazine News Internship and freelance assignments for Science, American Scientist and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Sigma Xi and PRI are also working together to develop content for the The World's new science Web site at www.world-science.org and to keep fans updated via Facebook, Twitter and Friendfeed.

The program's signature feature is The World Science Forum, a virtual science café during which anyone can chat online with a scientist host about timely topics. The discussion offers the same down-to-earth interaction as a live science café, with the increased accessibility afforded by an online format.

About Public Radio International®
Founded in 1983, Public Radio International leads media by producing, acquiring and distributing innovative content that enables U.S. audiences to "hear a different voice," bringing new voices, global journalism and cultural perspectives to the American public. Through partnerships with BBC World Service and station-based and independent producers, the Minneapolis-based network provides over 400 hours of programming each week, content that is broadcast and streamed online by over 800 PRI affiliates nationwide, whose radio broadcasts reach over 29 million listeners each week. Podcasts of PRI programs consistently rank in the top U.S. 100. PRI is the managing partner of the satellite radio company American Public Radio LLC, established with Chicago Public Radio®, WGBH Radio Boston and WNYC ®. PRI programming is available via XM Public Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio. For more information on PRI and its programs and services, visit www.pri.org.

About Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society
Founded in 1886, Sigma Xi is the international honor society of research scientists and engineers, with more than 500 chapters at colleges and universities, government laboratories and industry research centers. Membership is by invitation, in recognition of research potential or achievement. Over the years, more than 200 Sigma Xi members have received the Nobel Prize. In addition to publishing American Scientist magazine, the non-profit society awards hundreds of grants annually to student researchers and sponsors a variety of programs that support science and engineering.


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