Lecture with audience response system

Photo: wikona.se

Using an audience response system during a lecture increases the interactivity of the event and allows the audience to have an impact. With audience response the participants can express their opinions, which makes the lecture more interesting for the audience members who feel they are taking a bigger part in the event.

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Lunch lecture

Lunch with researchers – Researchers’ Night Borås

Holding a lecture at lunchtime and providing food can be an effective way of attracting visitors. The lecture format can vary but it should not last longer than a normal lunch break. Make sure there is time for questions and discussion at the end.

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Visitors at a lecture held during Researcher’s Night in Stenungsund.

Postgraduate research students go through a disputation where they present and defend their thesis. Disputations have been part of the programme of events during Researchers’ Night. Unfortunately they usually are at a level that may be hard to follow if the audience is not familiar with the subject matter. It may, however be interesting for the public to witness the disputation process.

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City walking tours

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A city walking tour – Researchers’ Night Karlstad 2011.

Inviting a researcher to talk about science or research in relation to sights seen on a walking tour is a good way of showing how research and society are linked. The choice of theme, route and information provided should be carefully planned.

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Excursion in Flemingsberg.

Inviting people along for an excursion is a simple way of presenting scientific work in the field. The excursion destination and information to be provided need to be carefully prepared. Group size and how many participants register for an excursion are other important variables.

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Field trips

Field trip to Äspö Hard Rock Laboratory in Oskarshamn. Photo: skb.se

Field trips can usually be made to the same facilities described under “Tours & Open House Events.” They are arranged in advance and there is usually a researcher to lead the group of visitors and talk about the research being conducted.

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Laboratories often offer good opportunities for presenting current research and experiments. However, it is usually necessary for someone to explain the research to the visitors, and to demonstrate and manage any experiments. Inside the laboratory visitors can to meet the scientists in their work environment and ask questions.

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Science centres

Tom Tits experiment – cycling on the wall. Photo: Tomas Aziz

One of the purposes of science centres is to present science and research to visitors. This makes them a very good venue for both tours and open house events. But you should remember that many people may have already visited the science centre and it may be in an out-of-the-way location.

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Research facilities

The research centre Station Linné on Öland during Researchers’ Night  Kalmar/Kronobrerg 2011.

A research facility can hold an open house for a day or an evening, with or without a tour, and present its work to the general public. Research facilities are often able to present current research and experiments. It is usually necessary for someone to explain the research to the visitors and to demonstrate or conduct the experiments.

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The science centre Universeum in Gothenburg organised Researchers’ Night in 2006.

Tours of zoos and animal parks can be offered as pre-booked or open events. Tours can be general or specific themed tours of certain animals or areas. Zoos are also suitable venues for open houses. Meetings with experts can offer more interaction and allow the public to get closer to various animals and study them in more detail.

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