The winning and highly commended projects for the 2016 Mariano Gago Ecsite Awards have just been announced at the Gala Ball of the Ecsite Annual Conference in Graz.
This year, Ecsite members were competing for the Ecsite Strategic Partnership Award, recognising extraordinary collaboration between an Ecsite member and an external partner whose work together enabled them to achieve goals neither of them could have reached by themselves alone.
Winner: Tekniska Museet
Sharon Ament, Chair of the Jury and Director of the Museum of London, just handed in our beautiful 3D printed trophy to the winner: Tekniska museet (National Museum of Science & Technology), Stockholm, Sweden. Tekniska Museet won the award for the partnership undertaken with artist Håkan Lidbo on the interactive exhibit “Make Music with Your Whole Body”, co-created with children and taking into account the needs of physically impaired visitors. The exhibit is part of MegaMind, a new exhibition space dedicated to creativity.
The Jury stated: “The exhibit development process of “Music with Your Whole Body” made the most of the fruitful meeting point of art and science and involved direct participation from visitors, serving an often neglected audience and addressing their special needs. The Jury was impressed by the openness of this collaboration, and the evidence of profound learning both on the artist’s and on the science centre’s side. This project struck a chord with the Jury: it is an inspiring example of co-creation for the science engagement community.”
“To be a museum for all, we saw it as a matter of course to create MegaMind in co-creation with others, not only technical experts, but also artists and above all, the visitors themselves. To win an award for having worked with these creative people, Håkan and hundreds of children with different conditions is just fantastic”, said Peter Skogh, Director of the museum, upon receiving the award.
Highly commended: International Centre for Life
The Jury also decided to nominate a Highly commended project: International Centre for Life, Newcastle, United Kingdom - for their partnership built with the Northumbria University. The partnership served as the basis for a continuing programme of activity that reinforced Life’s mission to be the best place in the UK for enthusing and engaging everyone in science, and Northumbria University’s vision as a research based, business focused, and professional university with a global reputation for academic quality. It included (and continues to include) exhibitions, public events, courses, internships, research collaborations...
As the Jury put it: “we were impressed by the breadth and depth of the partnership built between the International Centre for Life and Northumbria University. It struck Jury members as a long-term inspiring example of collaboration between a university and a science centre, and an expertly articulated strategic alliance.”
Ian Simmons, Science Communication Director at Life, said: “We are very grateful that our partnership with Northumbria University has been recognised by this commendation, which comes just as we are renewing our partnership for a further three years. This very rewarding and growing partnership with the largest University in Newcastle, has been a fantastic one for both partners. Endorsed at the highest level by both parties it has brought together different, but complementary skills and experiences, meaning that we have been able to do imaginative and exciting projects that neither party would be able to do on its own such as Maker Faire UK, a Masters degree in Science Communication and a GCSE Astronomy course.”
The Mariano Gago Ecsite Awards
Created in 2015, the Mariano Gago Ecsite Awards encourage creative and impactful work within the informal science education sector.
Find out more on the dedicated page.
Open to all Ecsite members, they provide an incentive and reward whose prestige contributes to the development of excellence in science engagement.