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Vienna Biocenter European Researchers Night (VBC ERN)
Start date: May 1, 2009, End date: Nov 30, 2009 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"Science is central to the success of the European society and to tackle some of the major problems mankind is facing in the near future. Nevertheless, negative stereotypes about scientists persist. While a slow erosion of these stereotypes is detectable, continued and sustained efforts are necessary to overcome this prevalent barrier to increase the number of scientists in Europe. The most efficient way to tackle these stereotypes is known: bringing the general public into direct contact with science and scientists. This provides the inspiration for the researchers night initiative and the Vienna Biocenter (VBC) as a research cluster relying intensely on qualified personnel subscribes fully to this concept. Therefore the VBC-ERN proposes an attractive programme, which aims at bringing its research and scientists closer to more than 5.000 visitors from Vienna. The programme will explore links between science and art and focus on  hands-on experience of science  oral presentations of scientists explaining their work  exhibition resulting from various calls and activities  concert of bands from VBC-researchers Vienna is well known for arts and music and the Viennese are proud of this heritage. By exploring links between science and arts the VBC-ERN would like to provide evidence for the VBC being a lively and active part of modern Vienna and its cultural life. This should promote an increased understanding and acceptance for the activities of the VBC in Viennese citizens. By portraying research through art, the general public is invited to explore science from a stand-point of enjoyment and pleasure, which should lower the threshold frequently associated with science as too technical and complicated. Furthermore, by providing scientists with the opportunity to explore a role shift from the reclusive, presenting their work mainly to peers, to an artist working for a more general audience we hope to promote future engagement of scientists with the public."

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