Call for Applications: Digital Communication Lab

The Next Big Bang – New Frontiers in Exploring Life : Digital Communication Lab for Exchange between Research and Communication on 11 – 13 May 2023

Logo des Humboldt Communication Lab for Exchange between Research and Media
Saturn-ähnliches Dekortationsbild

Communication Labs

More information about the ComLab and the results of the last digital workshops here.

A conversation between science and the media: Twice a year, ten Humboldt fellows meet ten journalists from the International Journalists’ Programmes. During a three-day workshop they explore different forms of collaboration between journalism and science with respect to a topic of current societal relevance and brainstorm on possible joint projects. Experienced mentors from media support the process. Lectures and training sessions focus on what constitutes good science communication and reporting.

Join the ComLab!

  • Join the ComLab network and be part of a specialised community of science communicators.
  • Exchange ideas with fellow scientists and journalists from all over the world.
  • Discuss current global issues with international experts from the political sector and civil society.
  • Learn innovative story-telling techniques from excellent trainers and mentors.
  • Work towards a compelling piece of science communication based on your research.
ComLab is where ideas grow wings. Great mentoring, lots of inspiration. Not to miss!
Karsten Lemm, journalist, IJP alumnus

ComLab#7: The Next Big Bang - New Frontiers in Exploring Life

Science has always experimented at the boundaries of life, but how will new technologies shape our understanding of humans and our habitats in the future? With new space mission, new AI-based approaches in medicine and fast developments in bioengineering, ComLab#7 aims to explore the research that will fuel our expectations in 2023. What are the new frontiers in research and how can or should scientists and journalists tell the story of the next big bang that is already fundamentally happening but has not yet arrived in everyday reality?

At the same time: How much news value should we ascribe to risky or early research? Can too much attention at an early stage harm further developments, especially in terms of public acceptance? In addition, there are ethical and social issues to consider, when we deal with disruptive research and technologies.

With the seventh ComLab we want to explore the next scientific revelation whilst also considering the underlying cultural norms that affect how new research is implemented and perceived in different countries.   

Key Questions:  

  • What are the big trends and topics in science in 2023?   
  • How to communicate cutting-edge research in a clear and comprehensible way?  
  • What might be the social and ethical implications of new frontiers in research – from the exploration of space to progress in the field of bioengineering or AI-based innovation?  
  • How do different cultural perspectives and religion influence our understanding of ground-breaking discoveries? And to what extent is the visibility of new research determined by inequality of opportunity – especially regarding differences between the Global North and the Global South?


11 – 13 May 2023 Have fun while warming up for ComLab. Get to know each other. Discuss what constitutes good science communication. Share global news on the relevance of science and media. Share ideas on how to collaborate. Get inspired by international science reporting. Learn from science experts about new ground-breaking research and how to tell its story. Brainstorm on project ideas. Pitch ideas to the guest juror.


Participation is open to ten Humboldt fellows. Knowledge and experience in science communication is an asset, but not a prerequisite for participating in this four-day workshop. We welcome applications from researchers of all disciplines whose past or current work relates to topics of astronomy, bioengineering, fusion energy, vaccine and new drug production, synthetic biology, public health, neuroscience, AI research and automation and in general risky and experimental research.

The workshop takes place in English and as a virtual format.


  • Strong motivation to engage with an international community of journalists
  • Active participation in expert discussions, interactive learning sessions, and creative collaboration with journalists from around the globe
Saturn-ähnliches Dekortationsbild


Call for Applications (PDF, 196 KB)
Preliminary Programme (PDF, 187 KB)

How to apply

  • CV in English (PDF), two pages max. (should include title of your Humboldt Fellowship Programme)
  • Motivation letter of 500 words max. (PDF)

All documents should be submitted in ONE e-mail to comlab[at]

Subject line: #Application for ComLab#7 and your name.


Application deadline: 14 April 2023

The programme is financed by