• #CrimComm

Catching the Eye

Picture this:

You’re sitting in your living room, mindlessly scrolling through your Twitter feed. Suddenly, a picture catches your attention. You see bright colours and cute little animals.

Upon clicking the picture and reading the title, you realize what you are seeing is research and data.

Now, you’re asking yourself, “Huh? What do these two things have in common”?

In reality, there is no substantial information to correlate animals and criminological research. However, it caught your eye…didn’t it?

Becoming creative

I think a majority of the time we can be scared or anxious to develop new ways to promote research, but if we keep going about the same sharing practices, then the research might get lost along the way. I mean, there’s so many white-paged papers talking about theories and topics in criminology.

I think one way to combat this is by utilizing colours and photographs that grab the reader’s attention.

We are so used to seeing a link on a social media site with an academic paper attached that we EXPECT the same thing each time. Why not change it up?

For some convincing…

In London (UK), there was a study on #CopCat in which the Metropolitan Police utilized a cartoon cat to combat phone thefts. The results yielded higher response rates and lower thefts in comparison to dark, threatening posters.

While this seems like a great idea on paper, I also understand that criminologists and researchers don’t necessarily want to cover up years of hard work with cartoons and bright colours.

However, if we are looking for greater outreach and getting research to more people, then creativity in conjunction with academic information can facilitate that.

How can I use this idea?

Your research is your pride and joy, so why not make it look beautiful and eye-catching for everyone else to see? Start by thinking of what your work represents. Depending on this, you can choose which colour scheme you think best relates to it.

Now, I’m not saying make your research paper’s background into a bold fuchsia colour, BUT you can create a prompt for the link that exhibits the colour scheme and eye-catching characteristics. It’s kind of like a thumbnail for YouTube videos or an artistic cover for a book.

What are the benefits?

There are many benefits to creative communication, such as:

This is a new and fun way to go about your criminology communication. Let’s get creative!

- Alexa Maude

University of Western Ontario

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