Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

EXPLORATHON Report Summary

Project ID: 633249
Funded under: H2020-EU.1.3.5.

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - EXPLORATHON (EXPLORATHON - European Researchers' Night Scotland)

Reporting period: 2014-12-01 to 2015-11-30

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Over 2 editions of the Night in Scotland 14,805 members of the public engaged with 786 researchers at a variety of different events. Our pan-Scotland approach has created the largest mass public engagement with research activity that the country has seen. The social media reach and Twitter impressions have reached remarkable levels and in total in excess of 2 million people have been made aware of the project.
Our participation has forged a new partnership based on innovative high quality public engagement across four key research driven universities in Scotland. This partnership has greatly enlarged the collective audience that each partner university has previously reached.
Participation has meant that the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions Programme has achieved an enviably high degree of visibility across Scotland. Through our work in 2014 and 2015 we have created a brand, Explorathon, which people now recognise and with which researchers are keen to be associated.
Our involvement in the 2 editions of the Night has greatly enriched the experience of researchers in their roles, both those with Marie Skłowdowska-Curie and Horizon 2020 funding and those funded by other streams, whilst it has introduced others to the importance and value of public engagement. We have brought research and researchers to a wide variety of audiences across the country and in a variety of different ways. We have helped to break down barriers to communication and have shown researchers as people with extraordinary jobs and showcased research as an important career path.
In short this has been an excellent project that has greatly benefited the partner universities and the researchers involved as well as enriching the lives and widening the horizons of the members of the public who attended the events.

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

"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;
Messages conveyed
o Researchers are amongst us;
o Researchers are ordinary people with an extraordinary job;
o Technological advancements and infrastructures often follow from research;
o Public can play a role in shaping research;
o Come and discover driven by curiosity and inquiry, trails which we all have;
o Collaboration is fundamental for modern research;
Main communication tools to rely on
Off line
o Set up of an EXPLORATHON brand image insuring strong message and national uniformity;
o Publication of articles, announcements, advertisements in nation la and regional press thanks to support from communication teams of all the 4 universities involved;
o Airing of some promotional spots on local community radio station in Aberdeen SHMU FM;
o Mailing to 23.000 households;
o Direct reaching of several local communities in both Glasgow and Edinburgh through the Glasgow City of Science and the Edinburgh Active Citizenship group;
o Attempt for TV coverage through BBC Scotland a and /or Scotland TV channels;
o Display of promotional material (flyers) in tourist info centres, event racks, cafés, bars, community centres and local libraries;
o Production and display of brochures promoting the activities and featuring researchers’ stories, puzzle and games research-themed;
o Specific communications to disadvantaged postcodes areas through cooperation with Community councils and their newsletters;
o Promotion of the Researchers’ nights through other public events (Aberdeen science festival, Glasgow City of science, Beltane network, 3dinburgh Fringe shows…
3
On line
o Setting up of a project website, linked with o-participants’ websites, institutional and popular ones;
o Use of national e-zines and e-newsletters of cooperating bodies for promotion (participants, cooperating bodies, alumni);
o Setting up of social networks profiles;
Promotional material
o Banners, roll ups, posters, flyers, brochures;
o Ads, banners and websites, hyperlinks, dedicated Twitter hashtag (ERNSCOT);
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 Conception, realisation and display of promotional material (flyers, posters, brochures, special magazines co-produced with research students);
o Publication of announcements and articles in local newspapers (such as the Press & Journal and Evening Express in Aberdeen);
o Public advertising (posters in city centres);
o Promotion of the event during public events (Science festival, public and school events, science cafés, University Open Days, lectures…);
o Setting up, constant updating and maintenance of project website announcement and detailed programme in each city;
o Setting up, constant updating and maintenance of social network profiles (Facebook www.facebook.com/ernscot, Twitter, Flickr);
o 284 Facebook and 215 Twitter followers, 1.400.000 Twitter impacts;
o Links with popular and institutional websites, as well as with European and other Researchers'Night websites;
o Posting of annoucements and promotion on University homepages, newsletters, e-zines, news sections and events listings;
o Airing of promotional spots on radio Station (Original FM, 42 adverts) and of special edition of community radio programme “Talking Science” on Aberdeen’s SHMU FM (Aberdeen), interviews on Scottish TV and Inverclyde Radio (Glasgow);
o Airing of a special 6 minutes feature for the Good Morning Scotland radio programme on Saturday 27th September by BBC;
o About 1,4 million people made aware of the Researchrs'Night and its objectives.
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Overview of the results
o Conception, realisation of promotional material: multiple posters, resue of roll ups, publication of 3000 programmes per city.
o Public advertising achieved by display of posters in various locations around the participating cities.
o Advertising in public places and public transport;
o Airing of annoucements/advertising /programmes/interviews on radio, newspaper adverts taken out in local media done across all partner cities in Scotland and in St Andrews and Cromarty.
o Appearance on The Riverside Show airing on STV Glasgow and an interview with the BBC’s Scottish Science Correspondent on BBC Radio Scotland as well as appearing on community radio station Inverclyde radio. These avenues alone have an estimated audience of over 365,000 people Invitations sent to local community networks via Glasgow City Council’s Equality Networks
o Annoucements during public events as ran by the various partner universities. For example in Aberdeen at Café Scientifique, TechFest Events, Doors Open Day event amongst many other one off lectures and events.
o Pre events: considerable activity on social media both for the event as a whole and for individual events with teaser information.
o Press releases were issued by the respective Communication Teams within each
participating university.
o Maintenance and constant updating of www.explorathon.co.uk project website, announcements, and
detailed programmes for each participating city. Number of hits and unique visitors on website;
23,000 page views and 9,000 unique visitors.
o Social network profiles (Facebook, Twitter, Flickr…) and number of likers or followers;
#explorathon15 generated 2,642,775 Twitter impressions with 1,440 tweets. Twitter account
(@ernscot) has 513 followers and the Facebook page has 548 likes.
o Also advertised each specific event in each city on relevant event listing sections of local
authority and local tourist authority websites.
o Indicate the overall numer of people likely to have been aware of the Researchers'Night and its
objectives: over 1,000,000.
o 500 free tickets to Edinburgh Zoo were sent to families of disadvantaged groups including:
Wester Hailes Community Group, Dads Rock, St Augustines School, Juno Perinatal Mental Health
Support, City of Edinburgh Council (school groups and Additional Support for Learning Service ),
Knox Academy, Clermiston Communit Group, Westerhailes Guiding Division, Poliish Scouting Scotland
and Pilton Community health project. 450 of these tickets were used on the day.

I.1.2 ACTIVITIES DURING THE NIGHT
o Press releases were issued by the respective Communication Teams within each participating university.
o Maintenance and constant updating of www.explorathon.co.uk project website, announcements, and detailed programmes for each participating city. Number of hits and unique visitors on website; 23,000 page views and 9,000 unique visitors.
o Social network profiles (Facebook, Twitter, Flickr…) and number of likers or followers; #explorathon15 generated 2,642,775 Twitter impressions with 1,440 tweets. Twitter account (@ernscot) has 513 followers and the Facebook page has 548 likes.
o Also advertised each specific event in each city on relevant event listing sections of local authority and local tourist authority websites.
o Indicate the overall numer of people likely to have been aware of the Researchers'Night and its objectives: over 1,000,000.
o 500 free tickets to Edinburgh Zoo were sent to families of disadvantaged groups including: Wester Hailes Community Group, Dads Rock, St Augustines School, Juno Perinatal Mental Health Support, City of Edinburgh Council (school groups and Additional Support for Learning Service ), Knox Academy, Clermiston Communit Group, Westerhailes Guiding Division, Poliish Scouting Scotland and Pilton Community health project. 450 of these tickets were used on the day.
I.1.2 ACTIVITIES DURING THE NIGHT
Tasks undertaken
List of locations and venues involved
Aberdeen: Maritime Museum, Aberdeen Science Centre (Satrosphere), Union Square shopping centre, Belmont FilmHouse cinema, Drummonds city centre café bar, university premises; Aberdeen City Council Chambers, Waterstones Bookshop; Hugh Millars Birth Place Museum and Cromarty Lighthouse.
Edinburgh: National Museums of Scotland, Our Dynamic Earth, Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh Zoo; Scottish National Gallery of Art; The Stand Comedy Club, Cabaret Voltaire, Wavery Train Station; The Royal Mile for open air walk; bars, The University of Edinburgh premises; city centre and suburban cafés, St Andrews’ student Union and Braes basement bar in Dundee.
Glasgow: The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery, The Riverside Museum, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow Science Centre, Braehead Shopping Centre, Tinderbox Coffee Shop, Glasgow Women’s Library, The Andrew Stewart Cinema, Saint Luke’s and The City Observatory in the Technology & Innovation Centre.
Main types of activities planned
Hands-on experiments, interactive sessions, discussions and chats with researchers, guided tours, visual arts, comedy events, film screenings, careers events, innovative engagement activities (Science Ceilidhs, Guerilla lighting) and European Corners.

Detailed programme of activities
Common themes: “Research for all” and “One night, unlimited discovery”
ABERDEEN
o Talk in Aberdeen Maritime Museum
o Aberdeen Science Centre (Satrosphere) discovery night
o Talks in Aberdeen Science Centre (Satrosphere
o European Corner, Science busking and discovery zone in shopping centre
o Talks on science demonstrations at Cromarty Lighthouse
o Keynote talk at Aberdeen City Council Chambers
o Café Scientifique event at Waterstones Bookshop
o Pecha Kucha event
o Bright club comedy night
o Science Ceilidh
EDINBURGH
o EU corners at National Museum Scotland (NMS), Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh, Edinburgh Zoo, Waverly Train Station
o Steampunk science (anatomy theatre of university)
o Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas
o Bright club comendy event
o Science café;
o PhD in an Hour
o Science Ceilidh
o Lighting Workshop – Open air event on the Royal Mile
o Artcasting workshop at Gallery of Modern Art
o Walking Trail in Edinburgh Zoo
o Careers Event at National Museums of Scotland
o Dancing Light Workshop at National Museums of Scotland
GLASGOW
o Hands on activities, talks and tours during the day in Glasgow’s busiest museums
o Drop in family focused activities in Braehead Shopping Centre
o Coffee house lecture on mental health in cooperation with a charity partner
o Presentation and discussion in partnership with Glasgow Women’s Library
o Café Scientifique looking at hypertension including talk, discussion and testing
o Research Cinema event with screening of two films followed by panel discussion
o Free entry to Glasgow Science Centre with over 200 researchers with activities, stalls and talks
o SciArt Ceilidh with interactive stalls focused on arts and health science
o Glasgow Skeptics talk on the European Referendum
o Bright Club comedy researcher show
o Pecha Kucha event focusing on the theme of Future Cities
European corners
Number: 7
Location: Aberdeen (Union Square, busiest shopping centre), Edinburgh (National Museum of Scotland, Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh Zoo, Waverly Train Station), and Glasgow (Glasgow Science Centre, Braehead shopping centre)
Activities planned:
o Display of informative and promotional material;
o Witnesses by MSCA fellows and researchers having benefitted from EU support about their career, works, and research mobility;
o Permanent presence of personnel likely answering the audience ‘s questions about EU policies and programmes;
o Connection to all relevant EU websites;
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 An image provided by the European Commission;
Overview of the results
Overview of the results
o Offer of 32 different evtns as described in the Annex I part B to the Grant Agreement, namely
o Hands on science to talks, debates, science cafes, comedy nights and celidihs;
o 11 in Aberdeen;
o 12 in Edinburgh;
o 476 researchers actively involved in the various activities, of whom:
o 50 having benefitted from Marie Curie schemes;
o 73 having benefitted from another EU support;
o 7.543 visitors having taken part in the activities offered.

I.1.3 IMPACT ASSESSMENT
Tasks undertaken
Description of the current situation
o 2011 IPSOS MORI public attitudes to science survey;
o Baseline survey of public attitudes towards research and research careers notably using omnibus survey in Scotland;
o Evaluation of the Nights via questionnaires and feedback derived from researchers and visitors, resulting in 1239 completed evaluation questionnaires.
Tools
o Baseline survey of public attitudes towards research and research careers;
o Framework of indicators using a Theory of change , map and logic model analysis;
o On line survey tools;
o Social media based tools;
o Evaluation questionnaires for audience and researchers at both editions of the Night.
Indicators and parameters to be applied
o Qualitative: Comments and discussions generated through social media; coverage received from the universities’ internal and external communications teams and the press and broadcast media, researcher feedback on their experience of the Nights and training received to support them in developing and delivering activities; audience feedback of the events, suggestions for events and topics the researchers and public would like to see in the future, how the event could be improved; what researchers and the public took away from the event, social media comments prior to and post the events, public opinion of researchers and their job (associations with the word "researcher", characteristics of "actual researchers", characteristics of "desired researcher, interest expressed in science and research, and in research careers…"
o Qualitative: public opinion about researchers and their corks (association with the word “researcher, characteristics of actual and ideal researchers, interest expressed for science and research, motivations for attending the event, intention to attend future similar events, involvement of researchers funded under HORIZON 2020.
o A Impact Assessment group led the Impact Assessment Work Package and analysed all date collated from both editions of the nights and delivered a report based on this.
Overview of the results
o 1239 evaluation surveys, polls and questionnaires were completed by members of the public who had engaged with researchers. These forms were processed and analysed.
Typology of visitors across both editions of the Night: about 61 % female, 39% male, significant part coming from Scottish Government determined Areas of Multiple Deprivation, broad range of ages, including events targeted at young people;
o Knowledge about the event: word of mouth (friends, schools, families, colleagues), written promotional material, social networks( Facebook), mailing, knowledge from last year, very low impact of radio and TV actions;
o Overall positive feedback about the events themselves (activities, interest, contacts with researchers, concrete organisation, scheduling, venues and locations) (93 % responders considering it excellent, vey good or good);
o Improved public understanding of researchers and their job (72 % responders);
o Increased interest about science and in particular the topics dealt with during the event (75 % responders);
o Clear intention of the attendees to display information within their families, friends, colleagues about the event in the future (95 % responders);
o Most successful activities: European corners;
o Researchers' opinion about their p
articipation in the event: retained as positive , with 85 % researchers involved intending to participate in future similar events and 98 % intending to recommend such a participation to their fellow researchers; appreciation of EXPLORATHON's impact on accessing new audiences fro the research they carry out (82 %)
"

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)

"Included in "Work Performed" section"

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