Public Speaking for Scientists

3000: this is the number of scientists who were successfully trained in public speaking by Agent Majeur. Which is why Alexia Youknovsky and James Bowers wanted to share the company’s approach to preparing an oral presentation. In their book, « SELL YOUR RESEARCH: Public Speaking for Scientists », they unveil the SELL method, consisting in 3 steps: Skeleton, Envelope, Life & Logistics. Whether you are a novice or an experienced speaker, whether you need to prepare a 3-minute pitch or a 2-hour oral presentation, in these pages you will find advice and exercises to help you improve your public speaking skills.



Learn a tried and tested 3-step method for preparing engaging presentations


Adapt to your context and audience: pitches, science conferences, thesis defences and more


Discover tonnes of examples
of successful science presentations


“Public speaking is one of the most intimidating but crucial tasks in a scientist’s career. This book provides a welcoming, clear, step-by-step guide to improving your presentations at every level. Reading it and following its advice will make your science talks less frightening and more enjoyable.”

Dr. Laura Helmuth
Scientific American

“For scientists these days, the work is not done until it is communicated. And now that problem is solved. Solidly researched and immaculately written, SELL YOUR RESEARCH: Public Speaking for Scientists is a goldmine of useful advice. Whether you are brimming with confidence or just setting out, this gem of a guidebook will improve every presentation and nurture every budding science communicator.”

Dr. Stephen Webster
Director of Science Communication Unit
Imperial College London


Alexia Youknovsky

Alexia Youknovsky

Founder and CEO, Agent Majeur.
A chemical engineer by training, with experience in both research and consulting, Alexia was also an actress for six years. Thirteen years ago, she created Agent Majeur, a science communication agency to provide specific services for stakeholders in research and innovation. She related to the constant pressure on scientists to communicate their activities and felt her combination of skills were a valuable asset. Now, she leads a team of science communication professionals with the objective of helping researchers promote their work through training, strategic planning, event production, graphic design, and various other activities.

James Bowers

James Bowers, PhD

Science communication consultant and trainer.
Passionate about science and media, British-born James obtained his PhD in Molecular Biology and Physiology in 2014. Upon completion, he was quickly swept up with the wave of young scientists choosing to devote themselves to research dissemination over the lab life. After experience presenting science to the general public in museums and events, he earned an MSc in Science Media Production from Imperial College London. He then worked in factual TV production and explained science on several shows. At Agent Majeur for over two years, James trains in public speaking and science writing, consults on a variety of science communication projects and hosts events.


Logo L'Express


In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, science is influencing politics more than ever. What about its communication? In this interview, Alexia Youknovsky explains how our leaders could benefit from the fundamentals of research communication (available in French only).

Times Higher Education

Times Higher Education

The ability to present clearly, concisely and memorably is crucial for academics’ careers. Alexia Youknovsky was interviewed by Jack Grove, from Times Higher Education, and talked about how scholars can improve their public speaking skills.

Science magazine

Science magazine webinar

Each week, Science magazine organises a webinar aimed at scientists. On the 29th May 2019, the topic of discussion was science communication. Alexia Youknovsky, founder and CEO of Agent Majeur, was invited amongst a panel of experts to discuss how to communicate research successfully. In this webinar, supported by the Fondation IPSEN, Alexia shared her expertise and talked a little about the SELL Method.

My Science Work

MyScienceWork webinar

Alexia and James hosted a live webinar in collaboration with MyScienceWork on the topic of science presentations. In it, they presented the three-step SELL Method and for each step they were joined by a guest to talk more about putting it into practise. Guests include Elodie Chabrol, Renaud Pourpre and Aduragbemi Banke-Thomas.

The National

The National UAE

Alexia Youknovsky was interviewed by the National UAE about the use of social media in Sci Comm. In particular the subject of the up and coming social network TikTok, currently used by NGOs to spread science messages to the public during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Papa PhD

Papa PhD Podcast

James Bowers spoke to David Mendes on his science communication podcast. Their discussion covered how science brought him from the bench to science popularisation, then into consulting at Agent Majeur and their upcoming book with Alexia Youknovksy.

Queen Mary University of London

Queen Mary University of London

James Bowers spoke to Andrea Cox, Careers Consultant at QMUL, about how he went from a PhD to Sci Comm Consultant. Growing up in Leeds he had always hoped that one day he would be able to study and work in France. In this interview, James reveals that, as a young scientist, he followed his dreams of talking about science to the world and his upcoming book.


Agent Majeur, science communication agency

Our science communication blog

You have a science talk coming up? Research you want to share with the world? Experts in science communication, we have been contributing to our blog for over a decade. We provide public speaking tips for how to make a good science presentation. If you wish to find out more, feel free to contact us for a chat.