Great works of science fiction can help us become more aware of real science, and more curious about the wonders of the cosmos. But for some people, they can actually help inspire a career in the sciences. The Conversation asked scientists to name their favorite science-fiction stories, and the results are inspiring. Astrophysicist Duncan Galloway explains how Larry Niven’s Ringworld helped get him interested in the field, and other scientists praise Iain M. Banks, Robert A. Heinlein, and Douglas Adams.

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