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Everyday Science 2009. Researchers and Research in Everyday Life

Final Report Summary - EDSCIENCE 09 (Everyday Science 2009. Researchers and research in everyday life)

'Everyday science' project brings the researchers' night initiative (25 September 2009), for the first time, in Emilia-Romagna. The aim is to organise public events all over the region showing how researchers and their work are interesting and notably contribute to the improvement of the citizens' daily life. ASTER (coordinator) worked in partnership with Universities of Bologna (Bologna and four campuses in Cesena, Forli, Ravenna and Rimini), Modena and Reggio Emilia (Campuses in Modena and Reggio Emilia), Ferrara, Parma and Cattolica of Piacenza. Municipality of Faenza and Province of Ravenna actively promoted public events. Several research and innovation centres participated to public events, as well as local public authorities and private sponsors all over the region.

25 September 2009 Researchers' night in Emilia-Romagna took place in Bologna and in other seven towns: Cesena, Faenza, Ferrara, Modena, Parma, Ravenna and Reggio Emilia. Different programmes included experiments and demonstrations, exhibitions and guided visits, open laboratories and museums, science cafes, conferences, shows and live music events. A significant number of researchers participated to public events, available to exchange with the public, together with testimonials, actors, dancers and musicians.

Activities were organised as follows:

Awareness campaign: this covered the elaboration of the overall communication strategy and tools, including the identification of a professional communication agency for designing the various communication materials:
- Communication tools: website linked to the partners' websites, several pages on the main social networks (Twitter, Facebook). Aster has developed also the new national researchers' night website.
¿ Press kit: kit of tools (presentation events and logo); written material: big and small posters customised for each of the eight locations, common general flyer and customised flyers for all events; specific actions addressing the media: promotional actions addressed to media and communication channels at local level, articles on the most diffused newspapers and free press at local level, interviews to researchers, news dedicated to the event displayed through local radio stations, short advertisements on Lepida TV.
- Launch conference: the general one in Bologna, local conferences in other towns.
- Mailing to schools/teachers, graduates, short advertisements on digital screens inside buses in Bologna, and advertising through the web.

Activities during the night: included the planning of the events in various locations (selection of venues, partnerships notably with local authorities, mobilisation of researchers), including the selection of a professional agency for the production of the central event in Bologna, the involvement of testimonials and musicians, research of sponsorships, both public and private, and the organisation of the poster competition final award.

Impact assessment: elaboration of the questionnaire in collaboration with other Italian responsible of other researchers' night funded projects, questionnaire displayed before, during and after events, also through project website, and processing of the data collected.

Project's results

Awareness (prior and post the event)
- Internet: project website, two public profiles (Facebook, Twitter), with respectively 11 097, 6 432 and 73 visitors during the month September, 20 articles posted on internet
- Press: launching conferences, two press releases, five inserts in local papers, 39 articles in local papers (prior and after the event)
- Written promotional material: 960 large posters, 2 800 small ones, 15 000 general (project level) flyers, 22.700 local flyers
-TV and radio: feedback on both national and local TV, radio inserts prior and after the event (one national station, 7 local ones)
- Production of over 100 pictures and 6 videos of the event.(displayed through the website notably)

Activities during the night
- 8 events respectively taking place in Bologna, Cesena, Faenza, Ferrara, Modena, Parma, Ravenna and Reggio Emilia;
- Direct or indirect involvement of 34 public and private sponsors and 18 local authorities (region, provinces and municipalities)
- Activities addressing general public, composed of adults, children, teenagers, groups of students and families
- Main group represented during the event: adults
- Venues: historical centres of towns, university areas/campuses, research centres: around 30 different locations hosted events for a total of 72 hours
- Types of activities performed: 38 seminars-open lessons; 9 conferences; 82 hands-on experiments; 27 exhibitions-guided visits; 8 shows-talk shows; 13 music concerts
- Direct involvement of researchers: over 400 researchers from different scientific areas well balanced between male and female (representing 28 universities, research centres and innovation centres of the region.)
- European dimension: setting up of a total of 7 European corners in collaboration with 14 institutions specialised in delivering information on European issues
- Overall attendance: over 10 000 visitors.

Impact assessment
- Conducted through questionnaires delivered during researchers' night events in several venues, also available on line
- Identification of 5 target groups: students, employees, employees in research field, pensioners, other (mainly self-employees); gender balance amongst the interviewees: 266 male and 288 female
- 554 questionnaires filled in, representing 5.37 % of the total attendants
- Input collected: positive appreciation regarding the contribution of the event to the improvement of the researchers' public image and to a better public awareness and understanding of the job researcher as well as to the stimulation of young people to embark on scientific careers; positive appreciation on the events themselves, with expression on a continuing will to take part in future similar initiatives.

Visual identity of the project

Project logo
The project logo shows a person looking freestyle jumping on a molecula structure. The picture includes the payoff 'Everyday science - Pensa che ti diverti', a wordplay which works well in Italian language by linking the concept of thinking with the concept of fun. The logo and payoff have been included in all project communication products.

Project website
On the left, link to detailed programmes of the eight events across the region; on the right links to information on the event, project, partnership, sponsors, contacts, press kit, poster competition and images/video of events; finally links to Twitter and Facebook pages from the home page.

National researchers' night website
In accordance with Italian funded projects coordinator, ASTER restyled the national website. The main image was inspired to a macro-visual of scientific image on which links to all Italian funded project websites are enlighten.

Printed materials
Realised in different formats: large posters (140x200 or 70x100), small posters with programmes (30x50), flyers with general information (common) and local programmes (customised); sample of local flyers (external/internal sides/6 pages) with the detailed programme of Bologna events; sample of general flyers (external/internal sides/16 pages) with general presentation of the project and of programmes of all events organised all over the region; large poster (140x200) for the Bologna event; small poster (35x50) for the Bologna event.