Of Schemes and Memes Blog

Mapping Science In The City: London

We scientists travel around a fair bit. But all too often, we fail to venture beyond the conference centre or, at best, head straight for the ‘must see’ tourist attractions in the given city. Wouldn’t it be good if there was a guide to scientific culture for all the world’s big science cities?

Well, this map of London is a first footstep in that direction. We’ve started mapping all the museums (red), institutions (green), universities (turquoise), publishers (purple), business locations (yellow), and plaques (blue) related to science. There are still a few to add (particularly with reference to the final three categories), but it’s ready for a play. Let us know in the comments what we’ve missed. (Note, also, that purely medical museums/institutions are omitted for the sake of clarity – there are just too many of them in London.)

View Science In London in a larger map

For other cities: we’d love to build up a collection of these maps. So, a call to action. If you want to share the scientific wonders of your own city, speak up in the comments. These maps are easy to put together in Google Maps, but we’ll be happy to talk you through it if you’re new to the software. As well as providing a handy resource, you’ll no doubt find out a fact or two about the history and culture of your own city – never a bad thing.


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    Nicolas Fanget said:

    Are you focusing on central London only? I could add a few that are a bit more on the periphery…

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    Elizabeth Moritz said:

    Hmmmm, now that I’ve moved to Boston maybe attempting a “scientific wonder map” here would make a good reason for me to get beyond my lab and apt?

    What software do I need to learn how to use to make a map?

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    Nature Network Team said:

    Nicolas – absolutely. Feel free to suggest.

    Elizabeth – go for it. You’ll find it strangely addictive. And you can collaborate on the map with other Bostonites. To get going, you’ll need a google account (if you have gmail or use Google Reader, you’ll already have this). Then log in and find Google Maps. Find the option that says ‘My Maps’ and click ‘create map’. With a bit of playing around, you should be able to work out how to drop pins and annotate them. But shout if you get stuck.

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    Nicolas Fanget said:

    We can start with the Health Protection Agency: HPA Colindale 61 Colindale Avenue London NW9 5HT

    and the Royal Veterinary College: The Royal Veterinary College, Royal College Street, London NW1 0TU; Hawkshead Campus, The Royal Veterinary College, Hawkshead Lane, Hatfield AL9 7TA

    I’ll come up with more later!

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    Matt Brown said:

    I think I left the RVC off on purpose as being a bit too ‘applied’ (see my note about health/medicine places). But I might add the Camden one. Hatfield ain’t proper London.

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    Joanna Scott said:

    Great idea, Matt – I’m feeling inspired to have a stab at one of these for San Francisco now. I think I’ve seen a map like this done before, but I’ll be back in touch when I can’t get my pins to change colour!

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    Stephen Curry said:

    Guess it’s ‘very’ outer London, but what about Downe?

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    Matt Brown said:

    Of course – how did I forget that. Still within the M25, so it counts as London in my book.

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    Ian Huston said:

    Lots of great work gone in to this map.

    One small point, you’ve put in one Queen Mary campus in Whitechapel, but the main campus is in Mile End, where Physics, Biology & Chemistry and Maths & Astro (and me) are located.

    The address is Queen Mary, University of London, 327 Mile End Road, London, E1 4NS. Website is http://www.qmul.ac.uk

    Also what would you feel about someone embedding this map elsewhere, with proper attribution of course? Or would linking back to this post be best?

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    Matt Brown said:

    Good point about Queen Mary II, Ian.

    Feel free to embed the map elsewhere. Hopefully, you can get the code by following the link through to the larger map, but drop me an email (i.am.mattbrown – at – gmail.com) if you need the map creator (me) to grab it.

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