Biotechnology is important for all of us, every day and everywhere on our planet. It impacts the lives of millions of people and the condition of our planet. Biotechnology is used in many different fields such as medicine, agriculture, and energy generation. This ever-developing area of science and economy needs a strong representation of scientists and researchers for creating innovative solutions.
The aims of the World Biotech Tour (WBT) include popularisation of biotechnology, establishment of a global network of scientists and inspiring future generations. The WBT comprises meetings of community life stakeholders, who promote knowledge and understanding of biotechnological issues. The WBT also engages many participants — students, teachers and specialists from science centres — who help spread the message across a wider audience.
Meetings in science centres
The WBT’s natural habitat are science centres, museums and science festivals. In 2013, science centres and museums in 198 countries were visited by over 91 million visitors, including 76.6 million in science institutions and 15 million via events and programmes reaching beyond the impact of formal education. These numbers are already impressive, and the science industry keeps supporting popularisation of STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics). The WBT final will take place in Tokyo, during the Science Centre World Summit 2017.
The WBT agenda
During a 3-year project, the Association of Science Technology Centres (ASTC) and Biogen Foundation will jointly implement the WBT in 12 chosen science centres and during science festivals all over the world. The WBT includes the following initiatives:
- The Ambassadors’ Programme, which inspires and engages students all around the world to popularise biotechnological issues and science in their local communities.
- Lab-in-a-Box educational set, which includes materials and tasks in the field of biotechnology to be used and solved by the project participants.
- Research on how biotechnology is communicated in informal scientific environments. Its result will be published on-line during the Science Centre World Summit 2017 in Tokyo.