Editor Angie Kelly thanks Macquarie staff for an epic year.
2020 was a huge year for The Lighthouse, thanks to our community of brilliant, pioneering minds. with the COVID-19 pandemic giving us an unprecedented opportunity to showcase Macquarie expertise across a vast array of fields.
To help our audience make sense of the unfolding COVID crisis, we published world-first medical research results, tips for parents on home-schooling, a list of suggested lockdown literature, advice on managing children’s fears and a guide to how vaccines work. We gave tips from physios on setting up a pain-free home office, lessons from historians on pandemics past, insights into border wars, panic-buying and forecasts on the future of work.
We published 63 stories during the lockdown period and we were rewarded with record breaking engagement, including 1,617,887 Facebook impressions and 40,011 engagements.
Our work covering the pandemic was recognised in two awards – a shortlisting in the Mumbrella Publish Awards 2020 and inclusion on the list of Australia’s Top 20 content marketers of 2020 by content juggernaut Newscred.
Our top performing stories were hungrily consumed by local and overseas readers, with articles republished by media outlets both in Australia and all over the world – including the UK, USA and South Africa.
Our number one story – Professor Debbie Haski-Leventhal’s commentary on COVID’s silver linings – captured the zeitgeist and continues to resonate every day since being published in March, with 3574 new readers in November alone. It’s the most read story we have ever published with almost 40,000 page views.
As we close out the year, I’m pleased to share our top ten most read articles:
1. 7 positive outcomes of COVID-19
Professor Debbie Haski-Leventhal
2. New hope as dementia therapy reverses memory loss
Professor Lars Ittner and Dr Arne Ittner
3. 81% of COVID-positive passengers on Antarctic cruise ship had no symptoms
Professor Alvin Ing
4. Please explain: why can you see the sun and the moon at the same time?
Professor Orsola De Marco
5. Please explain: why has the world population grown so much so quickly?
Distinguished Professor Michael Gillings
6. Panic buying or being prepared? The great supermarket rush
Dr Prashan Karunaratne
7. Smartphones are making us stupid – and may be a gateway drug
Professor Mark Williams
8. How to talk to your children about Coronavirus: Top 10 questions answered
Professor Jennie Hudson
9. Rare figurines uncovered at lost biblical city
Dr Gil Davis, Dr Kyle Keimer and Professor Yossi Garfinkel
10. Please explain: Why NASA is returning to the moon
Associate Professor Craig O’Neill
I would like to offer my heartfelt thanks to all the academic superstars from every faculty who have so enthusiastically shared their research results and valued opinion pieces with The Lighthouse this year – it’s inspiring to work with you all and help illuminate your impact and show our growing audience how you are all changing the world every day.
I look forward to reporting on more of your important work in 2021.