So long and thanks for all the science

Science Week tear drop banners

National Science Week 2018 has officially come to an end. (But there are still plenty of opportunities to science – see The Science Never Ends blog post.)

What a fabulous celebration of science we’ve had over the past nine (plus) days! We will be collating the statistics and stories in the coming weeks, but we do know that there have been almost 2100 events, competitions and online activities in the event calendar, making National Science Week 2018 another HUGE festival!

Before we here in the national office sit down for a quiet cuppa and share all the amazing activities we’ve seen and stories we’ve heard, we’d like to take the opportunity to acknowledge and thank the many important people and organisations whose dedication and commitment make National Science Week so successful.

Firstly, we’d like to thank the National Science Week partners and sponsors who play a key role in ensuring the national reach of the festival:

  • The Australian Science Teachers Association, who have been instrumental in providing material and support to teachers across Australia to get their students and school communities involved in National Science Week;
  • CSIRO, who ran a number of events and outreach programs during August, as well as hosting our website this year;
  • the ABC, who not only ran this year’s citizen science project (Virtual Reef Diver), but also celebrated with a special suite of programs exploring the impact of science, innovation and technology on our daily lives; and
  • media sponsors Discovery Science, COSMOS, New Scientist, and Popular Science, whose support have been instrumental in spreading the word.

Secondly, a gigantic thank you goes to each of the state and territory organising committees and Inspiring Australia state/territory-based managers. Each volunteer committee is responsible for compiling a successful state/territory-wide festival, and it is no small effort. They do this through running local grant rounds, organising launch events and festivals, inviting interesting international speakers, and building the general excitement in local organisations, institutes and communities in the lead-up to August.

Through the course of the year, we work with some small businesses who help us to pull Science Week together:

  • Science in Public, our publicists who work closely with the organising committees to share the wonderful stories of science week;
  • Media Heads who are responsible for our ambassador interviews and tv community service announcements;
  • Bitcraft who build our website; and
  • Secret Labs who make the Science Week apps.

We are extremely grateful to all the scientists and researchers, including Nobel Laureates and Australians of the Year, who participate in events and share their knowledge, enthusiasm and insights with communities across Australia.

We’re so proud that the Governor General and some State Governors, the Prime Minister, several Cabinet Ministers, and many Members of Parliament and Senators, as well as State and Territory Ministers and Members of Parliament attended launches and events in their communities, and helped to spread the word. It is gratifying to have them support and honour the work of our scientists, researchers and science engagers in this way.

And last, but by no means least, we thank the thousands of amazing volunteers who collectively made National Science Week 2018 a truly amazing national festival. Science Week is a peak in STEM engagement activity across the year and would not be possible without this substantial grassroots dedication. We cannot thank you all enough for your passion and dedication.

Now it is time to put our feet up and take a moment to reflect on the achievements of Science Week 2018, before we turn our minds to creating new, exciting opportunities for 2019.

Source:: National Science Week