Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

SCIMFONICOM 2014-15 Report Summary

Project ID: 633376
Funded under: H2020-EU.1.3.5.

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - SCIMFONICOM 2014-15 (SCIENCE IN MOTION FOR FRIDAY NIGHT COMMOTION 2014-15)

Reporting period: 2015-01-01 to 2015-10-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

"The “SCIMFONICOM 2014-15“ European Researchers’ Night in Serbia in 2015 was managed by the Institute of Molecular Genetics and Genetic Engineering, Institute for Biological Research and Faculty of Physical Chemistry, all three members of the University of Belgrade, with the cooperation of several educational and cultural institutions in the area (such as the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Belgrade City Library, the Regional Center for Talents, the French Institute, the Educational Museum, etc.), non-profit humanitarian NGO Youth Association against AIDS, Regional Team for Science, Education and Art Support in Central Serbia and recycling companies.
Under an overall theme, namely "Back to the future", SCIMFONICOM 2014-15 was organized in 2015 in 7 cities (Belgrade, Pancevo, Nis, Kragujevac, Jagodina, Cuprija and Svilajnac) and 6 rural communities (Arandjelovac, Trstenik, Zajecar, Negotin, Valjevo and Krusevac) in Serbia.
A broad range of activities was offered to the general public, main target of the action, which also put a strong focus on kids and young people, in particular those facing a career choice. Amongst such activities: Grand Science Adventure (interactive hands-on experiments and demos in different research fields), Treasure Hunt (win award by solving hands-on experiments); Green Science (hands-on recycling), Scientist in Private Life (visitors accompanying researchers in their hobbies such as cooking with a scientist and photo exhibition "Grow up to a child"), Travel with Science (bus ride in the company of Marie Curie to NIGHT venues), Peek in the Lab (concept of the Universe as a giant laboratory), Science in the living room, Science (in) Fiction, Little researchers (reciprocated visits between two elementary schools from two cities, improving pupils' communication skills)(substituting the initially planned activity "Professor Balthazar's rainbow", classroom from the future (envisioning education in schools of the future as technologically improved, interactive and fun), Media lab (uncovering the interconnections between media, science and citizens' daily lives) and European Corners (quiz about Marie Curie and Researchers' Night projects rewarded by a prize, presentations by Marie Curie scholarship winner and researchers involved in EU funded projects in Serbia, accompanied by a workshop). It’s also worth noting that relatively remote rural areas were actively involved in Researchers’ Night through Science Vans (mobile researchers’ teams).
All activities were implemented as initially planned, except for Professor Balthazar's Rainbow and related booklet (due to schools' absence of reactivity) respectively substituted by "Little Researchers" having proved very successful and android game "Collect planets", as well as "Live shows in streaming" (having proved too financially and technically demanding) replaced by Skype video calls;
The main objectives of this Researchers‘ Night of course consisted of bringing closer to one another researchers and the public at large, whichever age or scientific background, consequently tackling the remaining stereotypes about researchers and their job, and pointing out the fun and fascinating aspects of research with a view to stimulating young people’s interest for science and science careers."

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

"AWARENESS CAMPAIGN

Target audiences
o Public at large regardless of age and scientific background;
o Special attention to be paid to young people, especially those facing a career choice;
o Special attention to be paid to Elementary and Secondary Schools (youth of age 7-18 years) in rural communities

Messages conveyed
o Researchers are amongst us and they are easy to talk to;
o Researchers are ordinary people with an extraordinary work;
o Science is fun and fascinating;
o Scientific research has a great impact on our everyday life;
o Science improve the quality of our everyday life;
o Scientific career is exciting and rewarding.

Main communication tools to rely on

Off line
o Direct mailing to schools, teachers, headmasters in rural communities (launch of competition for hosting the events, based on an the submission of artworks by the kids interested in science and research);
o Direct mailing to educational institutions, teachers, headmasters in Serbia promoting SVan contest and Science future education contest;
o Direct mailing to educational institutions, teachers, headmasters in Belgrade schools promoting The best scholar scientific exhibition contest;
o Sponsorship/partnership search towards media;
o Publication of interviews, announcements and advertising in written media;
o Organisation of press conferences;
o Airing of several interviews, programmes etc. on TV and radio stations;
o Public advertising (schools, public transport, public places);
o Organisation of “pre-events”:
o Life of brain: researchers gave popular science lectures on brain during the Belgrade's Brain Awareness Week;
o Walking with science, during the week-end prior to the event;
o Science debates club and workshops in schools (science topics and art crafts on the same themes two weeks prior the event);
o Interactive lectures on themes above during the month September;
o Exchanges of web links, promotional material, posts, pictures, videos, through social networks with other EU funded Researchers’ Nights;

On line
o Revamping, constant updating and maintenance of project website;
o Revamping, updating and animation of social networks profiles (Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, etc.);
o Publication of on line advertising, linked to the yearly theme chosen;
o Sponsorship search towards electronic media;
o General e-mailing through participants’ networks of contacts and mailing lists;

Promotional material
o Programmes with detailed locations and venues, posters, flyers;
o T-shirts, badges, folders and ecobags branded using authentic visual identity created for RN 2015 in Serbia;
o Banners, ads, promotional material on social networks;
o Mention of "This European Researchers' Night project is funded by the European Commission under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions" on all promotional material displayed;
o Promotional gadgets (displayed through the European corner notably), complying with the general guidelines available at http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/communication/services/visual_identity/index.en.htm

Overview of the results
o Promotional material: posters of various formats, flyers, roll ups, programmes, badges, ecobags, folders, promotional android game "Collect planets" (substituting the announced booklet), displayed in city centre pedestrian zones, schools, faculties, various cultural and educational institutions and among press reporters;
o Public advertising: billboards and citylights (main City streets and biggest shopping centre), posters in public transport vehicles, one vehicle branded by RN 2015 visual identity;
o Pre-events:
o science popular lectures in cultural and educational institutions
o hands-on experiments in pedestrian city zones during the weekend prior to event;
o Contests (SVan, Science Future Education, The best scholar scientific exhibition);
o Workshops, debate and interactive lectures in Belgrade's schools;
o Drummers walk in main city street;
o Promotion during public events:
o Training Day in Cuprija (also training students for participating in the activities implemented in some of the cities involved);
o Researchers Day in Indjija (hands-on experiments and scientific demos performed by researchers and local schools);
o Organisation of 3 press conferences, both national (Belgrade) and local (Cuprija, Belgrade);
o Publication of articles/annoucements in press (daily, weekly, bi weekly, monthly newspapers and magazines);
o Airing of announcements and interviews on national and local TV and radio stations, announcements through news agencies;
o Revamping and constant updating of the project website, namely general info on the action, the EU support, 10th anniversary, info on researchers, sponsorships…;
o Revamping and constant updating of social network profiles, (Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Instagram);
o Links to several institutional and popular websires and publication of announcements and banners;
o General mailing for inviatations to pre-events and general mailing to elementary and secondary schools;
o Over 2 500 000 people have been aware of the Researchers'Night and its objectives.

ACTIVITIES DURING THE NIGHT

Locations and venues
o Belgrade: Knez Mihailova street, French Institute, Institute Cervantes, Belgrade City Library, Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Educational Museum, Rectorate of Belgrade's University, Faculty of Chemistry University of Belgrade, Gallery Singidunum, Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia, Science bus on route Studentski trg-Slavija-Studentski trg, Science vans with mobile units of scientists in rural communities (6 schools);
o Pancevo: Cultural Centre of Pancevo;
o Nis: the Summer Stage at Nis Fortress;
o Kragujevac: First Kragujevac High School;
o Cuprija: Medical High School;
o Jagodina: "Nikola Tesla" High School;
o Svilajnac: Natural History Museum of Serbia;
o SVans: mobile teams of researchers visited in "science vans" 6 schools in rural communities of Arandjelovac, Trstenik, Zajecar, Negotin, Valjevo and Krusevac.

Main types of activities planned
Hands on experiments, scientific demos, scientific exhibitions, debates, workshops, lectures, quizzes, games, competitions, European corners.

Overall theme: "Back to the future"

Detailed programme of activities

GREAT SCIENCE ADVENTURE
o Series of interactive activities with different scientific topics: geology, anthropology, astronomy, mathematics, physics, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, biotechnology, biology, molecular biology, chemistry and physical chemistry.
o Hands-on experiments such as DNA isolation, making buccal swabs and identifying cells under microscope, producing electricity out of the candle and acetone, making fuel out of water, …;
o Demos growing of human tissues by present and future biotechnology, basics of lasers technology and their use in research, galaxy formation, why insects are important in forensic science, how algae may be used as a forensic tool, liquid nitrogen as cooking ingredient; how to make soap, snow, ice cream, volcano, a genie in the bottle, chameleon, lava, bleeding iron, golden rain, etc.;
o Illustration of Mars and other planets environments, plants potentially present there, possible human colonies, interviews with aliens, drawing of aliens…;
o Workshops: how to make bioreactors and use them to fight climate change, how to make biopolymers and biopolimer toys, CSI working, making of tornadoes, making scientific jewelry, …;.
o Game simulating geology research and origin of oil;
o Presentation of virtual reality of Tesla from vision to computer models;
o Selection of best designed hands-on experiments of three schools during the competition referred to above.

TREASURE HUNT
o Addressing young audience, hands-on experiments to be solved for getting the treasure;
o Visitors' training about farm-making in the future, making their own mutants as source of biological diversity, speaking Klingon and Vulcan languages…;
o Accompanied by scientists and rewarded by a prize.

GREEN SCIENCE
o Participation in the whole recycling process (production of new raw materials from waste);
o Making one's own batteries at home (workshop);
o Recycling gym (specially designed bicycle to press cans, stressing fun and healthy aspect of recycling);
o Potential contribution of recycling to economy strengthening, social responsibility of the recycling act (water pollution and purification through equipment from recycled material);

TRAVEL WITH SCIENCE
o Free ride downtown, touring with young women researchers (science bus);
o Explanation of Marie Curie's life, pointing out her works and contribution to mankind and gender dimension in science, explanation of challenges resulting from gender bias;
o Discussion with researchers about their works and potential contribution to society through science development;

SCIENTIST IN PRIVATE LIFE
o Including notably “Cooking with scientists” (workshop) and photo exhibition “Grow up to a child”;
o Implementation of molecular gastronomy principles for production of the most interesting food, combining amazing taste and appearance;
o Display of photographs of scientists (throughout childhood and happiest memories toward present time);
o Storytelling illustrated by photographs, explanation of the wish to become a scientist;

SCIENCE IN THE LIVING ROOM – LIVING THE FUTURE
o Interactive exhibition: possible vision of the living room of the future. (meteorology, biology, and physiology being part of everyday living);
o New and alternative ways of designing a more comfortable living space (using alternative energy sources, redesigning and understanding the space itself though incorporation of natural factors into architecture);

SCIENCE (IN) FICTION
o Screenings of short films, presentation of literary texts and comics;
o Short discussions regarding science and art interrelation, and potential impact on reality;
o Presentation and direct involvement in Researchers'night sci-fi story/comic (workshop), accompanied by body paint artist transforming children into their imagined sci-fi characters;

PEEK IN THE LAB
o Based on last year's breakthrough in astronomy research: display of a Philae replica, as well as of the comet it landed on, and landing exercises for visitors;
o Uses and advantages of 3D Printer technologies (3D printed humanoid robot, working principles…);

LITTLE RESEARCHERS
o Substitute to Professor Balthazar's Rainbow;
o Aimed at encouraging children in elementary schools to ask and learn interactively;
o Developing basic science communication skills in children in elementary schools;
o Reciprocated visits for elementary schools, experiments/demos being realized under supervision of teachers and accompanied by researchers;

CLASSROOM FROM THE FUTURE
o Illustration of connection between science and education, and how science and technologies can be used to improve educational system;
o Also aimed at raising general awareness about overall availability of education, overall right to education, interest and fun of learning process, positive aspects of teamwork;
o Dedicated to primary school subjects from different grades: world around us, mathematics, chemistry and Interactive Spelling book of Serbian Alphabet, using latest technology;

MEDIA LAB
o Pointing out science's contribution to media development, potential media's support to science, and potential effects on citizens' daily lives;
o Interactive discussion between researchers and the audience on most interesting topics in science;
o Virtual trip around the world in 60 minutes, and individual Skype talks with Serbian scientists working abroad illustrating the above.

SVANS
o Visits of mobile teams of researchers in "science vans" 6 schools in rural communities winners of the best artworks contest;
o Hands-on experiments, demos, exhibitions, quizzes, performances and EU corners addressing audience aged 7-18;

EUROPEAN CORNERS

Number: 14
Location: French Institute, Faculty of Chemistry University of Belgrade, Cultural Centre of Pancevo, The First Kragujevac high-school, Nis Fortress, "Nikola Tesla" High School in Jagodina, Medical High School in Cuprija, Natural History Museum of Serbia in Svilajnac and 6 schools within rural communities (Arandjelovac, Trstenik, Zajecar, Negotin, Valjevo and Krusevac)

Activities planned:
o Display of informative and promotional material;
o Introduction to on-going EU supported research projects in Serbia;
o Quiz rewarded by a lab visit and the possibility of playing researcher for one day;
o Witnesses by researchers having benefited from EU support (Marie Curie or other) about their experience and mobility;
o European Researchers' Night MSCA roll-up (entrance of the event) complying with the following content and format requirements: 200 X 85 cm, and the mentions: "European Researchers' Night", "Marie Skłodowska-Curie: an inspiration to follow";
o Presenting a booklet that will celebrate Researchers' Night 10th Anniversary (formed out of ten most innovative solutions, with all the associated correspondence, from Professor Balthazar's Rainbow activity)
o NIGHT 2015 will be shared between all countries through Live shows in streaming, which will also be used for collaboration with the European Commission for the celebration of the NIGHT anniversary.

Overview of the results

o Offer of activities as planned in the Annex I part B to the G.A., namely
o 82 hands-on experiments;
o 24 demos;
o 11 workshops;
o 56 exhibitions;
o Debates, quizzes, competitions, game;
o Presentation, performance;
o Activities addressing audience as from aged 3 and over, except for quizzes, debates, competitions and presentation addressing aged 7 and over;
o Active involvement of 300 researchers, of whom 1 having benefited from Marie Curie schemes; 15 having benefited from another EU support;
o Real time Skype links between Belgrade and Budapest, as well as between Belgrade and other cities in Serbia for the celebration of the NIGHT anniversary;
o Over 33.500 attendees having taken part to the activities offered, distributed as follows:
- Belgrade: 15.000
- Nis: 7.000
- Kragujevac: 2.000
- Pancevo: 2.500
- Jagodina: 1.500
- Cuprija: 2.000
- Svilajnac: 1.000
- SVans: 2.500

IMPACT ASSESSMENT

Description of the current situation
o Based on existing surveys and studies;
o Also relying on last edition of EUROBAROMETER;

Tools
o Questionnaires available on (website, social networks) and off line, prior, during and after the event, face to face interviews;
o Questionnaire being compulsory part of the quiz organised in EU corner;
o Guidelines setup for face to face interviews;
o Training planned for pollsters;

Indicators and parameters to be applied
o Quantitative: number of attendees, of participants in various activities, of hits on the website, of friends and followers on social networks, of views and downloads, typology of visitors, media coverage…;
o Qualitative: increased awareness about researchers and their job, interest expressed for science and research, interest expressed for science careers, increased awareness about societal importance of research and researchers…

Selection of the sample
o Method: random selection
o Absolute figures: at least feedback from 5% of overall attendance.

NOTE: Relevant Deliverables for period 2 and for overall project have been submitted to the P.O. and approved for each of the WPs."

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

"OVERVIEW OF THE RESULTS FOR PERIOD 2

• Organization of the activities planned as foreseen in the Grant Agreement Annex I part B;

• 2.500.000 people were made aware of the Researchers' night and its objectives;

• Over 33.500 attendees having taken part to the activities offered, distributed as follows:
• 15.000 in Belgrade;
• 7.000 in Nis:
• 2.000 in Kragujevac;
• 2.500 in Pancevo;
• 1.500 in Jagodina;
• 2.000 in Cuprija;
• 1.000 in Svilajnac;
• 2.500 in SVans;

• Collection and processing of 2.299 feedback, namely 1.688 questionnaires correctly filled in and 611 face-to-face interviews;

OVERVIEW OF THE FINAL RESULTS (2 events)

• Organization of the activities planned as foreseen in the Grant Agreement Annex I part B;

• 2.500.000 people made aware of the Researchers' night and its objectives;

• 69.000 attendees during the 2 events;

• Activities during the 2 events included:
• 200 hands-on experiments;
• 40 demos;
• 20 popular science lectures;
• 20 workshops;
• 8 exhibitions, 5 competitions, 8 interactive presentations;
• 5 performances, 4 debates, 3 quizzes, 2 games;

All activities addressing audience aged as from 3, except for quizzes, lectures and debates addressing people over 7;

•Organisation of 23 European corners during the 2 events, approximately gathering 29.000 attendees;

• Total of 300 researchers was actively involved in the activities, of which:
• 1 researcher having benefited from Marie Curie scheme:
• 15 researchers having benefited from support under FP7/HORIZON 2020;

MAIN CONCLUSIONS FOR PERIOD 2

• Typology of visitors: 54% female, 46% male, average age 14,62 years (youngest 3, oldest 68 years old), education (preschool 1,8%, elementary school 56,5%, high school 35,7%, higher education 6%), scientific background (none 56,2%, low 41,8%, high 2%), geographical origin (Serbian urban 61,4%, Serbian rural 38,6%), interests (sports 8,1%, education 9,8%, science and research 18,7%, medicine 13,8%, public service 4,1%, IT sector 5,8%, arts 5,2%, crafts 5,3%, other 8%, do not know 21,2%);
• Way of having been aware about the event: schools 70,7%, word of mouth colleagues 8,5%, e-media 8,2%, family 6,4%, advertising 5,1%, passers-by 1,1%;
• Overall positive feedback (excellent organisation, fascinating themes, good scheduling, great contacts with researchers, skilled and kind volunteers, etc.);
• Most successful activities: Treasure hunt, Great science adventure, EU corners, Science (in) fiction, Meet scientists in private life;
• Improvement of researchers' public image and increased understanding of researchers' work social importance (9,9% increase awareness about significance of science and social impact of researchers' work from 2013 to 2015);
• Increased interest for science careers (11,8% increase interest in science careers, especially amongst children aged 7-15 from 2013 to 2015, 16,3 % in rural communities);
• Increased school and kindergartens' participation in the event;
• Possible improvements: identification of a reliable software support aimed at contemporaneous production of multiple video calls.

CONCLUSIONS OF THE ACTION

• The action reached the objectives pursued;
• Several improvements might however increase the event's impact with a view to a future similar event and in general regarding the main objectives of the action:
• Intensification of the communication actions towards the rural communities:
• Stronger focus on such communities, not only with a view to the events themselves, but also during the whole school year;
• Increased number of workshops organised in these environments, possibly as pre-events (teasers);
• Organisation of a larger number of science-related performances based on the success encountered;
• Consideration of the shopping malls as potential venues;
• Identification of a proper software support allowing the conduction of contemporaneous multiple video calls;

SOCIO-ECONOMIC IMPACT OF THE ACTION

Clearly the Researchers' Night can't be expected to have a measurable socio-economic impact as such. It nevertheless can have a certain influence about the relationships between research institutions, universities etc. operating in the area and having cooperated for the project, likely to go on after it and generate further synergies and positive impact for the territory concerned. SCIMFONICOM had indeed a positive impact on the relationships between Belgrade researchers' community and reputable cultural and educational institutions of Belgrade, namely Ilija M. Kolarac Foundation and Belgrade City Library; the cooperation initialized in occasion of the Night is already planned going on, notably through the organisation of science popular lectures cycles apart of this event. Teachers from Belgrade's schools furthermore showed great interest in the educational improvement illustrated through two SCIMFONICOM activities (namely, "Around the world in 60 minutes", created by a professor and "Classroom from the future", realized by researchers in Coprix media company); the promoters of these activities have been invited to various schools after the Night, which is most likely allowing the promotion of qualitative educational improvements highly needed in the Serbian educational system. Also, Researchers' Night allowed strengthening the relationship between NGO "NOU team" and local schools in the region of Central Serbia, as well as between NGO "JAZAS" in Kragujevac and local schools in Kragujevac, through the generation of new local educational activities and events related to science promotion after the Researchers' Night. All the elements referred to above regarding the reinforced networking of activities through the Researchers' Night will without a doubt contribute to a constant improvement of the public image of researchers and their jobs as well as of the awareness about opportunities related to the choice of a science-linked career."

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