In the tales of One Thousand and One Nights, king Shahrayar learnS that his wife is unfaithful and he has her killed. He decides that all women are the same and to avoid them dishonouring him, he pledged to marry one every day and execute her the next morning. Scheherazade, the vizier’s daughter, decides to be the king’s next bride and her father reluctantly agrees. On the night of their marriage, Scheherazade would tell the king a tale, but does not end it. The king, curious about the tale’s end, postpones her execution to hear the conclusion which never came, for 1001 nights. Shahrayar, by then quite impressed and rather smitten, spares her life.

 

Scheherazade the story-teller thus saves her life and the lives of other women by telling king Shahrayar engaging stories. In the 21st century, by telling the public about her science, she will spare herself and other women from inequality, bias and under-representation.

 

Scheherazade Speaks Science is a platform for a diverse choir of female scientist voices around the world. Using storytelling, it serves to make science accessible, inclusive and engaging.

 

This space is a social enterprise committed to sustainability development. By providing community, voice and agency to female scientists, it mediates higher recognition and visibility through which equality of access and opportunity can be achieved. Gender equality is one of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG5), which are globally adopted priorities to end poverty, preserve the planet and promote peace and prosperity for all.

 

The science you read here is an engaging narrative with a social dimension. This narrative puts science out in the open by combining Aristotle’s three elements for effective communication: ethos (credibility and character), logos (logic and reason) and pathos (emotional bond and resonance). It is signed with a unique authorial commentary that gives it character and keeps its reader coming back for more.

 

After all, this is Scheherazade.