Farida Vis

Farida Vis is a lecturer in the Department of Media and Communication at Leicester University.

You’ll see from the blurb on the Leicester webpage that her interests are eclectic. What threads through it all is how we mortals communicate with each other, and how our individual perspectives matter.

Hence an interest in social media (for an astonishingly incisive and insightful report on how misinformation spread on twitter during the riots in the UK in August 2011, see this Guardian data blog she and colleagues created — and yes, it is interactive).

She’s also an allotment holder in south Manchester where she lives. Like all good horticulturalists, her mind doesn’t stop while the muck-raking; hers led to the instigation of allotmentdata.org. To her surprise, she’s now considered an expert on the non-plant side of allotment matters — that’s since a Guardian data blog The English lottery allotment was published.

Although The New Optimists is about West Midlands scientists, we asked Farida to the dinner discussion on food poverty issues in Birmingham, taking place on 9th February 2012. This is because she has a unique understanding of all of the above, plus the often salutary outsider perspective.

You can follow her on twitter @flygirltwo.

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