Science provides a summer survival guide

The Royal Institution launches a series of seasonal science videos that provide the blueprint for a scientifically perfect summer.

Head in the clouds
Royal Institution


Summer brings sunny days and lazy afternoons. But it also brings sweating, hay fever, insects and jet lag. Throughout this summer, science charity the Royal Institution of Great Britain (Ri) will be releasing 13 short films produced by their award winning Ri Channel team, each under five minutes long, that tackle some of summer’s challenges with science. Harness your body’s cooling mechanisms to keep the sweat off, take charge of your circadian rhythms to conquer jet lag, and follow the recipe for evidence-based BBQ perfection.

The first film, on the science of sweating, launched on Thursday 4 June on the Royal Institution YouTube channel. The remaining films will be released every Thursday through to the end of August.


The films are bite-sized nuggets of sun kissed science, wrapped in practical ‘life-hacks’ to enhance your summer. They bring a scientific perspective on summer’s prevailing features; a new understanding to the perks and perils of this time of year.

The films are presented by The Royal Institution’s Science Learning Content Developer Kate Mulcahy, who said “I’ve always been an experimenter and a tinkerer. With these films we’re taking that spirit further, channelling scientific understanding to hack a whole season, taking the best time of the year and making it even better. 

“There’s science in everything from sun cream to sunglasses, and these films from the Royal Institution will help people appreciate it. I love summer and want to help arm people with the understanding they need to make the most of it. The films are fun, short, and interesting. A little science knowledge wrapped in an entertaining bundle that’ll help show the practical benefits of understanding more about how the world works.”

The videos will reach across the sciences. Kate grapples with the psychology of summer and seasonal affective disorder, the biology of allergies, and even the physics of skateboarding. Taking a different topic each week, the videos will gradually build up an equation for summer perfection; a summer survival guide certified by science.