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Shaking things up: Addressing controversial topics in science centres

Why and how do science museums engage with sensitive and/or controversial topics in exhibitions and public programmes? Museum locations, governmental relationships, funding sources, political, social and religious environments, and local events and media all affect how a topic is handled. What benefits or challenges arise? The session examines several variables as they play out in different settings. Topics to be considered include: race or gender issues, obesity, mental health, interpretation of religious texts, medical treatments, sexuality and reproductive biology, and current research on evolution, stem cells and climate change. Participants present real situations which they have initiated, contended with, or unexpectedly encountered which led to creative, satisfactory, and sometimes unpleasant, outcomes.

Convenor

Robert M. West, Ph.D.
President
Informal Learning Experiences
Denver
United States

Session speakers

Experience Director
Vantaa
Finland
Dorothée Vatinel
Curator
Paris
France
Director of Imagineering
Manama City
Bahrain
Consultant
Science Centres International
United Kingdom

Session speakers

Consultant
Science Centres International
United Kingdom
Dorothée Vatinel
Curator
Paris
France
Director of Imagineering
Manama City
Bahrain