Dr. Shini Somara
Dr. Shini Somara turns cutting-edge science into heartfelt and informative television. Her work can be seen on a variety of television networks including BBC World News, BBC America, BBC, Sky and Discovery and PBS Digital Studios. Shini is now based in London. Before then, Shini hosted TechKnow for Al Jazeera America from Los Angeles.
Although Shini’s background is in engineering, her fascination for innovation is diverse. She has reported on climate change, food, health, energy and the physics of dark matter. Shini feels most comfortable putting herself in the middle of an experiment or interacting with technology.
Shini began her career as a mechanical engineer at Brunel University (London), completing a Bachelors of Engineering (BEng(Hons)), followed by an Engineering Doctorate (EngD). She specialised in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), where computer simulations are used to ‘visualise’ how gases and liquids flow. CFD enables engineers to understand how air flows over aircraft wings, Formula1 cars and within high-rise buildings.
Shini hosted Crash Course: Physics (2016) and Crash Course: Engineering (2018) for PBS Digital. She is passionate about providing STEM education for all, because ‘knowledge is empowering’.
Concerned with diversity, inclusivity and the lack of women in STEM subjects, Shini has also launched a weekly podcast called Innervation (formerly known as Scilence). Her podcasts feature many inspiring and aspirational female scientists, who have been willing to share their own experiences with her.
Scilence provides a safe place for women to share how they survive and thrive in male-dominated industries. During her speech at the United Nations in February 2017 for ‘Women and Girls in Science’ day, Shini highlighted the importance of role-models and mentors. Scilence and Innervation provides a platform for such role models to be heard.
Shini is also an Imperial College London Mentor. Shini became a published children’s book author in 2020, launching her first series with Hachette for 6-8 year olds. The titles are A Engineer, Scientist, Coder and Mathematician Like Me.
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