Interview with the Nature Italy team

The YEBN has had the pleasure of interviewing two members of the Nature Italy team, Joffrey Planchard and Nicola Nosengo.

Joffrey Planchard is Strategic Partnerships Manager at Nature Research in charge of relationships with institutions in the UK, Western and Southern Europe and Africa.

He has 20 years of experience studying and working in the UK, France and Spain in science related activities. He joined Nature Research in 2011 after graduating in 2006 and working as a scientific translator for 5 years. He was initially in charge of relationships with libraries in France, Spain and Belgium before joining the Strategic Partnerships team in 2016.

Introduce yourself and your work.

My name is Joffrey Planchard, and I am the Strategic Partnerships Manager responsible for the UK, Western and Southern Europe and Africa. I work closely with universities, research institutions and governments in these regions to elevate their profile globally and maximise the impact they have in their fields. We achieve this by providing these institutions with access to the services and solutions designed by the editors of Nature Portfolio around capacity building through training programmes like the Nature Masterclasses, or promotion of research findings to a wider audience with programs like the very popular webcast series.

How is it working for an influential journal like Nature?

I have always been interested in science, so I was delighted when I was able to join Nature Publishing Group back in 2011, now Nature Portfolio. It is a great environment to work in, and it is a great feeling to know that we participate in something that has a positive impact on the world and the society. Nature’s original mission statement was published for the first time on 11 November 1869, and it is still very much at the heart of everything we do like the Nature Italy project which is designed to report on the work of leading research establishments from the region and increase the impact of individual scientists.

What will be your new project? 

I am still very much working on Nature Italy as we are just at the beginning of this adventure, but I am also proud to announce that in spring of this year, we will be launching the Nature Africa portal which will aim to give our global readers an insight into the latest research from African states and also promote science literacy across the continent. 

Do you think this will encourage scientists in staying local and promoting scientific growth?

This is exactly what we have in mind when working on our regional portals. Brain drain is a common denominator in countries like France, Italy and Spain and giving access to scientific information in local languages can help create vocations and inspire new generations of scientists highlighting the great research produced by local organisations. We also hope that these portals will encourage local and foreign investment in science in these regions to support scientific and economic growth.

What other plans has Nature Research?

We are at the very initial stages of replicating the success of our Nature Italy program in other European countries including France and Spain so I hope there will be some positive developments to report on in the coming months. And obviously we will continue providing solutions to institutions and researchers who want to partner with Nature Research. We put the researchers at the very heart of what we do so we strive to act as a partner to the scientific community identifying their short and long term needs, providing them with the solutions we already have at our disposal, and developing new solutions to meet those needs that are still unmet. In this regard, I am interested in engaging, and I am at the disposal of members of the research community who would be keen to contribute to our regional portal program or who have suggestions on how a publishing house like Nature Portfolio can help them achieve their goals.

Nicola Nosengo is a science writer and scientific communicator with over 20 years of experience at the national and international level.

He has a degree in Communication from the University of Siena and a master in Science Communication from the International School of Advanced Studies (ISAS) in Trieste. In Italy he has contributed, among others, to L’EspressoLa StampaFocus, Le ScienzeMente e Cervello, Il Tascabile, covering technology, physics, space science, robotics and AI, neuroscience. He has been covering Italian science for Nature for many years, and his stories have appeared in The Economist. In addition to his journalistic work, he has worked as a communicator for the Italian Space Agency, the Italian Institute for Astrophysics, and for the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL). He wrote three books for the general public and has worked with RAI (Italy’s public broadcasting company) for projects and programmes on science and technology. A native of Genoa, raised in the Piedmont region, he has spent most of his professional life in Rome but is now based in Lausanne, Switzerland.