Bridge the gap: Make complex research accessible

Effective communication of complex ideas is essential for researchers to ensure their work has a significant impact on their audience. In this blog post, our senior producer, Karen, shares her top picks of our academic research-based animations, showcasing the power of animation in making research engaging and accessible.

Working out how best to communicate complex ideas is an increasingly important and challenging part of a researcher’s remit. After all, the true value of research lies in its ability to reach and influence those who can learn and benefit from it.

Animation has the power to bring your research projects to life, helping simplify complexity and clarify the obscure. And at Scriberia, we enjoy nothing more than turning information or data that might, at first glance, appear dry and distant, into something really human, relatable, and engaging. 

Over the past decade, our animators have tackled a vast array of topics - from particle physics to postpartum anxiety - turning them into visual stories that engage and inspire. Here, our senior producer, Karen, shares a few of her favourite animations based on academic research:

The History of the World... in one minute!

"As part of SOAS' century celebrations, we were given this a dream brief: The History of the World in one minute? It's just not possible! It's too vast and complicated to be squashed into a short animation," says Karen.

"But, working with the team from SOAS the human history in its broad brushstrokes, we were able to zoom out of the detail, and focus instead on the a far bigger picture that is true, the world over, and throughout time. 

"To help us deliver that message, we settled on a style of illustration that borrows from the great civilisations, and speaks to the histories and cultures that are all part of this same story."

Coping with voices 

Karen says: "One of the great strengths of animation is to make visible what otherwise would remain unseen. To be able to show this private world and the invisible torment of those who experience this condition is incredibly powerful - it’s actually hard to think of another way to represent this subject matter." 

Understanding Covid transmission

"Metaphor is a powerful tool to make abstract subjects more tangible. But actually, sometimes it works to stay in the abstract. The language of shapes we developed to describe Covid transmission provided a simple, easy-to-follow narrative at a time when clarity on this subject was of global importance," says Karen.

A life of labour in ancient Rome

Karen explains, "Moving away from the scientific, this animation we made with Julia Lewis at the University of Kent on Roman working-class life is an excellent example of how rich, informative illustration can reduce the need for motion, helping to cut production time and cost."


To see more of our animations, head to our full-to-bursting YouTube channel, or to talk to our team about how we can help bring your research to life, click the link below.