Second European Science Festival: WONDERS 2007
Submitted by sis on 12 June 2007
WONDERS, the first European Science Festival, came to an end at the Heureka science centre, Finland, in December 2006. Over the course of the year, 21 science organisations from 18 countries exchanged an impressive 63 science shows. Among many other exciting activities, visitors could cycle at the speed of light, track a white stork using a satellite, or isolate DNA from tomatoes in the kitchen. From all those science shows, two of the best science communication presentations were chosen in the Finnish finals.
“Dr Molecula really showed how the language barrier becomes irrelevant when the performance is such fun and so vivid,” says a jury member, Finnish high-school student Roosa Jokiaho.
The Finnish audience selected Joachim Lerch’s ‘Blue Light’ project, a simulated factory from Germany in which visitors could assemble their own flashlights. Both adults and children were taught how to drill, countersink, tap, punch, solder, band, assemble, rivet and adhere.
All the science shows in the Carousel of Science try to stimulate the interest of European citizens in science, encouraging them to become more curious about European science and, in the case of young spectators, to think about a future science career.
The science shows are organised by the science communication institutions of the participating countries and are sent to each other during their science festivals or science weeks. In that way, not only do the visitors to this ‘foreign’ show learn something in an amusing way, but also the hosting organisation can experience how other countries conduct their science shows.
In 2007, the second European Science Festival, WONDERS 2007, will see 31 organisations from 24 states participate in the Carousel of Science, exchanging science shows between cities as distant as Moscow and Lisbon, Reykjavik and Jerusalem. The Estonian university town of Tartu, for example, will send scientists to the Greek city of Thessaloniki, while the Greek researchers will in turn go to Madrid, Spain. Why not join the dizzying ride?
EUSCEA, the European Science Events Association, is the co-ordinator of this project, the European Commission is funding it, and the partners in 2007 are the European Schoolnet and EUSJA, the European Union of Science Journalists’ Associations.
For more information about WONDERS and to find out about science shows in your country, see: www.euscea.org
Teachers who want to find out how to take their pupils to the shows can email EUSCEA General Secretary and WONDERS Co-ordinator, Peter Rebernik: firstname.lastname@example.org