The Athens Science Festival returns next week (April 5-10, 2016) to Technopolis cultural center for the 3rd consecutive year. The festival acts as a platform for communication between science and the general public, representing innovation in science communication. This year’s theme is “Evolving with Science”. From supporting the understanding of life and matter, to creating intelligent machines, science has a leading role in evolution. Disease control, digital communication and the invention of new materials with unique properties we couldn’t even dream about a few decades ago are only some of the factors that can change our lives for the better. Climate change and species extinction, on the other hand, are also transforming our planet into something different than what our ancestors have experienced.

However, boundaries of who develops what are becoming more unclear. Is science progressing in order to serve us, or are we changing in order to follow it?Do developments adjust to our needs or do they dictate new ones? The Athens Science Festival invites the public to ask questions and get scientific answers on such matters, while having the opportunity to attend exhibitions, screenings, thought-provoking lectures and debates with renowned Greek and foreign scientists. Speakers this year include: Svante Pääbo, Director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany and the first scientist to decode the entire genome of Neanderthals will give a presentation titled “Your internal Neanderthal”; John Ellis, Clerk Maxwell Professor of Theoretical Physics at King’s College London, will talk about “What are we? Where do we come from? Where are we going?”; Daniel Wolpert, Professor at the Department of Engineering of Cambridge University, will explore the mystery of human movement with “Why do we have a brain”; George Chrousos, Professor and Chairman of Department A’ of Pediatrics at the Athens University Medical School, will talk on “Stress and Everyday Life”; Michail Bletsas, Research Scientist and the Director of Computing at MIT’s Media Lab, will present the future of Ιnternet connectivity; Chiara Montanari, an Italian engineer and Antarctic Expedition Leader will talk on whether there is a connection between “Crisis and Antarctic Environment”; and many more…

ASF collageThe audience will also have the opportunity to attend interactive exhibitions (such as the one organized by Humane, a Greek startup company designing sustainable systems for vulnerable groups) and take part in various workshops and educational activities, games and competitions, such as Hebocon robot competition.

In addition, the British Council in Greece in cooperation with Hub Science will hold the Grand Final of the 10th FameLab competition for new talent in science communication.  FameLab is a training programme in competition format to get people talking about science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine. Finalists at the Grand Final in Athens will give short presentations on a contemporary science topic and the winner shall represent Greece at FameLab International taking place at the Cheltenham Science Festival in the UK this June.

The Athens Science Festival, which is under the auspices of the Greek Ministry of Education, is organized by the educational organization “Science Communication – SciCo”, the British Council, the Onassis Scholars’ Association, the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Hub “INNOVATHENS”,  the Industrial Gas Museum of Technopolis City of Athens and the General Secretariat for Research & Technology, in collaboration with various academic, research and educational institutes.

Watch video: Athens Science Festival 2016- promo