Science Week 2020 to stage hundreds of virtual events all over Ireland during November

‘Choosing our future’ mission to explore how science will shape a better world

Yodith Moloney,  from Salesians Primary School, Limerick, and Dr Sarah Hayes light up the room with science during the SSPC Science Magic Show  as part of a previous University of Limerick Science Week. Photograph: Brian Arthur

Yodith Moloney, from Salesians Primary School, Limerick, and Dr Sarah Hayes light up the room with science during the SSPC Science Magic Show as part of a previous University of Limerick Science Week. Photograph: Brian Arthur

 

Undeterred by Covid-19, Science Week 2020 will stage hundreds of virtual events throughout the country focusing on deploying science to help make a better future. Events for all ages will be taking place, whether it is exploring the wonder of space from Arranmore island or an interactive family-friendly science day in Ballyhoura.

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, joined Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) to launch the week.

Running from November 8th to 15th, Science Week provides people across the country with the opportunity to ask questions, explore the science behind everyday lives, and consider the future we want and the role science can play in helping us create and understand our shared future.

This year the theme for Science Week is “Choosing Our Future”, focusing on how science can improve our lives today and for decades to come. SFI said it wanted to start a conversation on how science can positively impact our collective futures and help us shape the Ireland we want to live in. The public will be asked to share their views during Science Week 2020 through a series of formats.

Minister Harris said: “Science, technology, engineering and maths all play a huge role in our everyday lives and in our economy, that has never been clearer than during the past few months as we respond to Covid-19. Science Week is an opportunity for us all to engage with the science all around us and have informed conversations about our shared ambitions for our future.”

He is encouraging people across the country to get involved. “Although we cannot join in person this year, I hope this year’s virtual Science Week will see science celebrated in every corner of Ireland.”

Variety of events

SFI director of science for society, Dr Ruth Freeman, said this year Science Week aimed to support conversations among the public about what they want the future of Ireland to look like, and how science can and should support the hope we have for our collective future.

“Throughout Science Week we will be looking for the public to get involved, to share their views . . . As we mark the 25th anniversary of Science Week, we are delighted to bring a fantastic variety of events to the public in a virtual capacity, so wherever you are, there are opportunities to discover, create and engage with science,” she added.

Dr Freeman paid tribute to the organisers for developing really creative ideas this year and hoped people of all ages get involved and join the conversation on what science can do today and for our shared future.

Most Science Week 2020 events will take place online and are free to join, but registration may be required. A number of events are due to take place in person in full compliance with Covid-19 guidelines. A sample of the Science Week events taking place and available to join online are:

Baking in Space: A virtual opportunity to join Andrew Smyth, aerospace engineer and Great British Bake-Off finalist, and Dr Niamh Shaw, scientist, performer and explorer, on a gastronomic journey into orbit. The event will be taking place live online on November 8th, 11th and 15th.

Tech Scéal: This will bring together families to explore science and engineering through a series of workshops involving robotics, electronics, coding and e-textiles culminating in an online virtual exhibition.

Workshops: A series of entertaining workshops are being staged for primary and secondary schools to bring into their classroom, including an exploration of our senses with Ginny Smith, scientific illusions with Dr Matt Pritchard and aerodynamic discoveries with Go Fly Your Kite.

Family Day: A special family day on Saturday, November 14th, will stream interactive events and workshops on ScienceWeek.ie including a live quiz with Phil Symth (RTÉ’s Home School Hub) and an interactive session with Mark the Science Guy (Explorium) to build your own Rube Goldberg machine at home.

The Mirror Trap: This is a short immersive scientific experience about psychology and quantum physics on Saturday, November 14th, at 19.30pm.

This year there will be 13 Science Week festivals taking place in Cork; Cavan/Monaghan, Sligo, Galway, Limerick, Tipperary, Mayo, Wexford, Kilkenny, Kerry, the southeast and the midlands. For a full list of shows, workshops and talks visit www.scienceweek.ie