The art of hitting the right level, no matter the audience!

Astronomy for any audience
skills development making a difference

Sixth Star Inc. (speaking engagement on cruise ships):
Richard is able to engage with anyone, young or old, expert or layman, Chinese or Western. And he fully uses this talent in adapting his talks to the audience.
Science Councillor, Netherlands Embassy in Beijing (2016)
Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan:
Thank you very much for [your] wonderful seminars for Japanese researchers this time. It was a very good opportunity for them to learn hands-on knowledge on the topic, and we could bolster our credibility by conducting your seminars.
Event organiser

The lecturer explained in [an] easily understandable manner about how to proceed [with] international collaboration and how to solve problems [from] his own experience. It was [a] good seminar [for] young researchers who would like to pursue international collaboration in the future.
Audience member

Researchers' Night 5.0 (on the theme of the International Year of Light 2015), Beijing, China:
Prof. Richard de Grijs from [the] Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University first enchanted the audience with a captivating presentation outlining the purpose of this UN initiative. He introduced why the theme is relevant [to] all disciplines including social science, humanities, arts and culture.
EURAXESS Links China; full report
Birkdale School, Sheffield, UK:
Just another huge thank you for your mind-opening talk. It is good of you to give up your time. Attached is a note from one of the boys.
Head of Science

We would like to thank you for the excellent lecture you gave us on 12th March during our science week. I know that it was enjoyed by all of my friends. I found the pictures and videos fascinating, which gave me a great perspective on the size of the Universe which I would never have been able to think of otherwise.
Lots of people would have been interested and influenced to go on and work in that area, as it seems that you can’t stop discovering new things. We really enjoyed your visit and would be delighted if you were to come in again some time and entertain us all; it was certainly the most fascinating and mind-boggling presentation I’d ever seen and I’m sure most other people thought that too.
Class S3S, Birkdale School

Mexborough & Swinton Astronomical Observatory, UK:
The members said that they really enjoyed the lecture, it was something for everyone, it is good when speakers can talk at all levels of experience. We all send our regards and hope to see you again.
Programme Coordinator
Bradford Astronomical Society, UK:
I would just like to thank you for the marvellous talk you gave us last Monday.
Audience member

Many thanks for your lecture last night. We think you managed to pitch the level just right – in fact two new visitors actually decided to join and pay their subscriptions because they had enjoyed it so much.
Programme Organiser

Cleethorpes Astronomical Society, UK:
I wonder if you would be prepared to give one of your excellent talks here at Cleethorpes again?
We really enjoyed your last talk. Our members are now hooked on having real research people to talk to them!
Meetings Secretary

Thank you again for a really great talk last night. I'll never look at M81 and M82 in quite the same way.
Manchester Astronomical Society, UK:
On Monday evening I gave a talk to Bradford AS and in discussing speakers and topics for future lectures at Manchester, their secretary recommended you as being an excellent speaker.
Lecture organiser; see also this report
SETpoint Bradford / Space Circus, UK:
Thank you for your time and brilliance at the Space Circus session. You were very helpful and we are very appreciative of your support and expertise.
Chief Executive
Café Scientifique Sheffield, UK:
Thanks a lot for your participation at the Café Scientifique. You gave us a great evening.
Leiden University, Netherlands:
The professor was really clear in the explanations, besides the material and organization of the class was wonderful.

The combination of historical background, cold hard facts, theory and movies makes it easy to grasp the concepts and the problems.

... and with those delightful videos played in the lecture, making the material very easy to understand. Good job, Richard.
Student evaluations
Peking University, China:
Thank you for your wonderful teaching and care all the time!

I really enjoyed your lectures during the last semester.

Thank you for bringing these wonderful lectures to us.

... and thank you for your dedicated teaching. I really benefited a lot.

And thank you for the whole semester.

Thank you for your teaching and guidance this semester.
Student testimonials

Video testimonials

2012 Selby Award lecture: Citation and introduction by Professor Michael Dopita (Australian National University)

2011 public lecture at Beijing Planetarium (When Galaxies Collide...): Introduction by Dr. ZHANG Ziping (in Chinese)

Make up your own mind!

  • 2017 commencement speech, School of Physics graduation ceremony, Peking University

  • Is bigger always better?, Monash University (Australia), 2012
  • When galaxies collide, University of Sydney (Australia), 2012 [audio only]
  • Cosmic Fireworks, Swinburne University (Australia), 2012 [lecture 37; audio only]
  • Sunlight and space travel, Physicists in Primary Schools project
  • Forces and gravity, Physicists in Primary Schools project

Video interviews

(Top 25, Gold medal research awards 2016)