It depends on the information I’m after. If I need information on a new development in biology, there’s not much me point in asking an astrophysicist! So this simple answer is ‘the expert in that area’ – and I’ve got a huge list of experts for different topics.
I think my favourite person I’ve spoken to recently, though, is a guy called Hugh. He’s an engineer that looks at the science of vibrations – which can have an effect on things like how aeroplanes fly. However, as part of his work he’s done TV programmes on thing like the Dambusters from World War 2 – so he’s got a really great way of explaining things in a way that could be understood. He’s also really passionate about solving climate change, so it’s great to chat to him!
There is a scientist in my research group whom I’ve known for a very long time, and he’s wise, funny, and very approachable. I like to come to him with my questions, and I know he’ll always find an interesting anecdote that is somehow relevant to my questions!