Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

reSEARCH Report Summary

Project ID: 722628
Funded under: H2020-EU.1.3.5.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - reSEARCH (Re(search))

Reporting period: 2016-06-01 to 2017-06-30

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

reSEARCH (Probe) was an immersive, spectacular event held on September 30th, 2016 in the iconic Front Square of Trinity College Dublin, designed to engage with citizens and showcase the fantastic research and researchers of the university as part of European Researchers’ Night. The coordinator of the action was Science Gallery Dublin. At Probe 2016, members of the public were invited to meet the people whose gripping work will change our lives, solve major global issues, and lead to a safer, healthier and more equal society. The audience was invited to explore solutions to society’s biggest problems and learn about cutting-edge thinking through debates, interactive workshops, cooking workshops, secret screenings and much more.
The overall aim of the event was to spark engaging, collaborative and useful conversations about how research is addressing the seven societal challenges laid out by the European Commission. The following questions were presented to the public in advance of and during the event to act as a catalyst for delving into these big issues further:

How can we reduce global inequality?
What will transport and our city look like in the future?
How can we reduce global warming?
How do we solve our health problems?
How do we secure food and water resources for the future?
How do we protect our freedom and security?
How will we generate energy in the future?

Probe 2016 aimed to bring researchers closer to the general public and increase awareness of research and innovative activities, with a view to supporting the public recognition of researchers, creating an understanding of the impact of researchers' work on citizen’s daily life, and encouraging young people to embark on research 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

Overview of the results (WP1)
o Conception and production of a common visual identity used for all promotional materials both on and offline;
o Public advertising on public transport (Dublin Bus network), as well as digital screens around the city and on other academic campuses (Micromedia network), posters and display of leaflets in public libraries, tourist information centres and hostels (targeting international visitors);
o Dissemination of leaflets to Freshman students in all student packs;
o Engagement of special interests groups ranging from the Irish Deaf Society to the Irish Refugee Council for specific events;
o Publication of articles, advertisements in widely-read cultural free-sheet publication;
o Creation of a project page on the Trinity College Dublin website (https://www.tcd.ie/research/probe ) and Science Gallery website
(https://dublin.sciencegallery.com/events/2016/09/proberesearchuncoveredtrinitycollegedublin ) as an online communication platform with possibility of registration for free tickets to specific events, as well as for updates for the whole event;
o Creation of a Facebook page, namely https://www.facebook.com/TCDProbe/ with sharing of imagery and video documenting public engagement with researchers, sharing conversation, listening to performance and taking part in experiments;
o Hundreds of followers and likes on Facebook Page;
o Wide share of PROBE 2016 (reSEARCH) by city-based listings sites, event guides and websites in the run-up to the event;
o Feature of PROBE 2016 (reSEARCH) in Science Gallery Dublin’s widely-read online newsletter and social media streams;
o Highly targeted digital advertising, including Google AdWords and Facebook;
o University mailings and social media outlets targeting Trinity College Dublin undergraduate students, graduate students and alumni;
o Documentation and livestreaming of talks and events to a large audience via numerous social media channels including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Periscope and Snapchat;
o 42.000 followers on Twitter for Trinity College Dublin;
o 48.000 likes on Facebook for Trinity college Dublin;
o About 200.000 people made aware of the European Researchers' night and its objectives.

Overview of the results (WP2)
Offer of the activities as described in the Grant Agreement Annex I B, namely:
o Hands-on experiments and workshops;
o Exhibitions;
o Science shows;
o Demonstrations and competitions;
o Informal talks with researchers;
o Games and theatre performances;
o Display of research-related projections;
o Live music;
o Cookery/art demos, based on cooperation between cooks, artists, as well as zoology, geography and social science researchers;
o Film screenings and panel discussions;
o Research surveys…;
o EU corners;
o Active involvement of 130 researchers, of whom:
o 8 having benefitted from MSCA schemes;
o 25 having benefitted from another EU support (FP 7, HORIZON 2020);
o About 2.500 visitors having taken part in the activities offered.

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 (WP3)
o Collection, analysis and processing of 255 feedbacks, of which pre-event questionnaires, and post-event questionnaires:
o 172 pre-event;
o 83 post-event (same responders);
o Main conclusions:
o Typology of visitors: 42,7 % people aged 18-25, 59,3 % female, strong majority of Dublin inhabitants (81,5 % on 83 participants), followed by 6,2% living outside Ireland and representatives of other Irish counties (Wicklow, Cork, Down, Kildare, Louth, Meath, and Roscommon);
o Overall positive feedback on the event (location and venue, contacts with researchers, activities, concrete organisation, scheduling);
o Knowledge about the event: mailing lists (21,7%) and social media (20,8%). Both mailing lists (+6,4%) and social media (+6,8%), newspaper/magazine (0,9%) and radio advertisements (0,9%);
o Motivation for attending: interest in research (33,3%) or the subject of the events were of particular interest (27,5%), support a friend or family member that was a researcher participating in the event (-2,5%), 3,9% just passing and decided to visit;
o 61% found something to be surprising of whom 49% described the research they encountered to be surprising, whether that be a specific project, the wide diversity of research at Trinity, or the characteristics of the researchers;
o Associations with the word ""research"": “science,” both before and after the event, and a wide variety of responses including “innovation,” “future,” and “knowledge” ;
o Research areas considered the most important: health and climate with climate being considered more important after the event than before (+7,4%), while health was considered less important after the event (-6,9%), equality research considered more important after the event (+3,7%);
o Increased general awareness about the importance of certain research areas in Europe;
o Increased general awareness on research;
o More humanized perception of researchers;
o Broader use of the knowledge acquired in citizens' everyday life;
o Decision-making power on research unchanged after the event compared to responses collected before: European Union followed by industry;
o Lessons learned and possibilities of improvements:
o Increasing student participation and engagement;
o Expansion of he event to other academic campuses across Ireland;
o Inclusion of researchers in the evaluation process allows ensuring that the event represents a relationship of reciprocity between them and the public;
o Collection of direct feedback from researchers allows collecting suggestions for improvements, thereby inspiring more researchers to get involved in the event;
o Need for further preparation for adverse weather conditions."

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