Science and public: Ugandan experience of cafe scientifique

1,231 views

Published on

Presented by Patrice Akusa Mawa at the Public Engagement Workshop, 2-5 Dec. 2008, KwaZulu-Natal South Africa, http://scienceincommunity.wordpress.com/

Published in: Technology, Business
0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total views
1,231
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
3
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
5
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Science and public: Ugandan experience of cafe scientifique

  1. 1. Patrice Akusa Mawa
  2. 2. Background <ul><li>A Café Scientifique is ‘a place where, for the price of a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, people meet to discuss the latest ideas of science and technology that are changing our lives’. (Dallas et al). </li></ul><ul><li>Meetings take place in cafes or winebars, community centres or other public venues. </li></ul><ul><li>The Café Scientifique is the first worldwide network devoted to publicly discussing science. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Café Scientifique in Uganda <ul><li>Started independently in July 2007. </li></ul><ul><li>Some support and guidance from Café Scientifique, Leeds (Duncan Dallas’ group). </li></ul><ul><li>Meetings take place once a month. </li></ul><ul><li>Usual format is for a speaker, usually a scientist, to speak for 20 minutes, followed by a break for drinks and then discussion and questions for up to an hour. </li></ul><ul><li>Attendance between 10-30 on average. More in local cafes. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Why a cafe? <ul><li>Traditional cultural ways </li></ul><ul><li>Changing the location of scientific discussion, from the University or research centre to a cafe, changes the agenda, tone and nature of the discussion. </li></ul><ul><li>The meetings are open to anyone and the atmosphere is relaxed and friendly. </li></ul><ul><li>In a Café you expect to have a conversation, and the object of the Café Scientifique is to bring science back into conversation and culture. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Find a cafe in Uganda <ul><li>Entebbe (central Uganda)- 2 cafes. </li></ul><ul><li>Kasese (western) </li></ul><ul><li>Kampala (central) </li></ul><ul><li>Arua (north western) </li></ul><ul><li>Nkumba univeristy (central) </li></ul><ul><li>Speakers: research centres & universities. </li></ul><ul><li>Topics: Health, environment, agric, social, aviation, financial. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Challenges & lessons <ul><li>Lack of resources. </li></ul><ul><li>Self sustenance is a problem. </li></ul><ul><li>Maintaining “scientific spice & flavour ” in the cafes. </li></ul><ul><li>Discussions of sensitive issues-ethical? </li></ul><ul><li>Few ladies attending. </li></ul><ul><li>Cafes in local languages look to benefit the ordinary person directly. (live testimonies!) </li></ul><ul><li>Using creative approaches can get the public back to science. </li></ul><ul><li>Big appetite for informal science discussions in Uganda. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Good news......... <ul><li>Wellcome trust public engagement award. </li></ul><ul><li>Expand/strengthen adult cafes and start junior cafes in schools in Uganda. </li></ul><ul><li>Junior cafes meant to popularise science, encourage science education and hopefully make scientific basis of conditions easy to understood. </li></ul><ul><li>Project co-ordinator recruited already. To start work in January 2009. </li></ul>
  8. 10. Thank you

×