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European Union Contest for Young Scientists 2016

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - EUCYS2016 (European Union Contest for Young Scientists 2016)

Reporting period: 2015-11-01 to 2016-12-31

The City of Brussels hosted the 28th edition of the European Union Contest for Young Scientists (EUCYS), from 15th to 22nd September 2016 and welcomed guests from 39 European and extra Europe countries to take part in a very exciting science adventure organised by the Jeunesses Scientifiques de Belgique (Young Belgian Scientists) together with the European Commission.

The Contest, which takes place every year in a different European city, is one of the core initiatives of the European Commission to support students interested in science and technology, to foster their talents and to make science more appealing to young people. EUCYS is part of the Science with and for Society activities managed by the Directorate-General for Research and Innovation of the European Commission. Within Horizon 2020, Science with and for Society aims to build a more harmonious relationship between scientific endeavour and the European Society at large.

EUCYS was supported by public institutions and private partners including the Brussels Region (VisitBrussels & Innoviris), the City of Brussels, PRACE, the Salvetti Foundation, the Biobased industries bioeconomy, FoodDrinkEurope bioeconomy, Dupont, Nestlé, Ferrero, EuCheMs, Intel ISEF, Joint Research Centre and the EIROforum including the CERN: The European Laboratory for Particle Physics, EUROFusion, EMBL: The European Molecular Biology Laboratory, ESRF: The European Synchrotron Radiation Facility, ESA: European Space Agency, ESO: European Southern Observatory, ILL: The Institute Laue-Langevin, XFEL: The European X-ray Free-Electron Laser Facility GmbH which contributed in different ways to the success of this edition.

138 contestants aged 14-20 selected in 37 countries and the European Schools attended the event and showcased the results of the STEM projects at an exhibition held within Tour & Taxis. This former gigantic customs clearance and goods warehousing complex logically used to be the central hub for the transit of merchandise through the city and was rehabilitated as an Exhibition area.
100 stands, including 90 projects split by field, welcomed the public and the Jury members in charge of awarding the 34 prizes.

The parallel programme organised for the participants offered a science conference conducted by EIROForum; the visit of Brussels, the visit of the Parlamentarium, a musical dinner dedicated to the Belgian culture and other cultural sightseeing.

For more information, visit the website.
The Jeunesses Scientifiques de Belgique worked at creating a platform of national, regional and local institutions, as well as private entities and companies, committed to science and research and eager to collaborate at this important and set up a large team to carry all needs.

The Host Organiser provided with all the needed actions including:
- The management of the contest including the H2020 call and its reporting, the setup of the Executive Committee and the Organisation Committee as well as the team on the event, the administrative work related to the contest, the communication with the European Commission;
- The setup of the budget and the financial follow up of the Contest;
- The setup of the scientific and cultural programme and the different activities including the opening ceremony, the awards ceremony, the exhibition, the EIROForum lecture, the National Organisers meeting and visits, the Brussels visit, the Belgian dinner;
- The support to all the National organisers, contestants, accompanying persons, jury members, journalists and partners in all aspect on a daily based;
- The realisation of the information system in line with the needs;
- The setup of the exhibition and the different meetings at Tour & Taxis;
- The organisation of the accommodation for all participants;
- The organisation of the local transport for all participants as well as the international transports for the included participants;
- The organisation of the meals for all participants;
- The creation of communication material, including a website, a poster, invitations, etc.;
- The setup of a dissemination and communication plan to engage the public to visit the exhibition;
- The follow up with national and international journalists, as per the list defined by the European Commission, to report about the contest;
- The follow up with the partners of their participation.

For those tasks, the definition of partners and contractors has been conducted following the needs.
The European Union Contest for Young Scientists was launched in 1989 with one clear objective – to attract more young people to careers in science. Even nowadays this aim stays crucial. The Contest has proven to be a spring-board for future careers in science for the contestants, several examples of success stories from previous contests are gathered in the booklet “Science our Future – 15 years of the EU Contest for Young Scientists 1989-2003”.

Organising EUCYS 2016 set up an excellent platform for cooperation and interchange among outstanding young European scientists, which enabled collaboration and knowledge transfer. It was a great opportunity for networking and will contribute to the efforts to raise the attractiveness for young talents to develop their career in science and technology with respect to innovation.

The outstanding young students got the chance to meet others with similar interests, compete and present their innovative projects. Moreover, the local students were invited to see the best works of their peers from different European and International countries. There was a space at EUCYS 2016 to identify new talents in science and technology.

The event program itself was planned to respond to the above issues and to maximize the impact.
Thanks to the implementation of a well-planned communication strategy the general public, as one of the core target groups, was engaged in science and technology which lead to increase public awareness of science development. Thus, by organizing the 28th EUCYS 2016, the project contributed to raise interest of young students in science and raise of public understanding of science and technology which are the long-term goals of the European Research Area in general.

The Contest was open to the public from Friday 16th till Sunday 18th. The participation of local students and young researchers was fostered as much as possible, especially through a series of ad-hoc communication and partnerships.

Special initiatives were planned in order to attract more public.

EUCYS promotion to schools and to the large public was intensified on the Belgian National Contest held on April 29th-30th 2016 and continued till September 2016.
The contestants
A project
Opening ceremony
Arrival of the participants
Awards ceremony