Looking Back: Nacht der Forschung 2018
Last year the “Expedition: Curiosity” set foot in the Rhine-Neckar region with great success: The Nacht der Forschung Heidelberg | Mannheim took place for the first time last September 2018. The event organisation behind this ageless spectacle was undertaken by the European Learning Laboratory for the Life Sciences at EMBL, the European Molecular Biology Laboratory. The City of Heidelberg participated as a cooperative partner.
A total of 10 partner organisations invited the community to a nine-hour research trip into a wide variety of natural and social science, medical and artistic disciplines. From 15 o’clock until midnight, interested guests were able to listen to readings and lectures, enjoy concerts and demonstrations, and try out experiments. The many hands-on activities offered by the various institutions were especially well-received. Participating organisations included knowledge sites from the fields of molecular biology, astronomy, physics, robotics, medical research, biodiversity, geography, pedagogy, age-research, digital heritage, art and culture.
Alongside EMBL, the House of Astronomy and the Max-Planck-Insitute for Astronomy were represented on the Königsstuhl. The Neuenheimer Feld glowed with a wealth of research facilities as seven scientific institutions opened their doors to visitors – the University Hospital Heidelberg, the Botanical Garden, the Mathematikon, the Head Clinic, the Kirchhoff Institute for Physics, the Institute of Computer Engineering, the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), and the learning laboratory of ExploHeidelberg were delighted by the rush of visitors. Furthermore, the University of Heidelberg and the University Archive, the creative industries center D16, the German-American Institute (DAI), the Network Aging Research and the Technoseum as the Mannheim location all together offered a diverse array of program items.
By entering an oversized large intestine, making plaster casts, exploring new meteorite impacts on Earth, conducting a DNA analysis, and many other activities, visitors gained insight into the diversity of international research activities. The project partners also succeeded in creating an atmosphere of encounter on an equal footing with the guests.
The event leaders were pleased to welcome more than 10,000 visitors who sought to research, discover and learn at the first Nacht der Forschung in the Rhine-Neckar region. The visiting of the research institutes was made accessible to the public by the free shuttle bus, which linked the institutions together, and by the free admission to all program activities.
Nacht der Forschung Heidelberg | Mannheim is part of the Europe-wide European Researchers’ Night funded by the European Commission, and it will be held again this year. This year’s event will provide even more insight into the research landscape as more science and cultural institutions take part as new partners. Join us on the 27th of September, 2019 as the “Expedition: Curiosity” enters a new round!