From 16th to 18th of August, Daugavpils Innovation Centre (DIC) and Science and Education Innovation Centre in Liepaja (ZIIC) participated in the Norwegian democracy festival “Arendalsuka:”, which took place in Arendal, Norway. Representatives of innovation centres also shared experiences with their Norwegian counterparts, visiting the Arendal Science Centre “Vitensenteret Arendal”. On the closing day of the festival, innovation centres participated in the discussion “100 reasons why science is fun!”.
Innovation centres observed Arendal Science Centre “Vitensenteret Arendal”, its exposures, explored the experience of Norwegian colleagues in organising various experiments and activities. “Vitensenteret Arendal” promotes STEM and STEAM among Norwegian youth, and is one of more than 10 innovation centres in Norway.
On the 18th of August, representatives of the innovation centres participated in a discussion “100 reasons why science is fun!”. Representatives of the innovation centres informed about the activities of innovation centres in Latvia, discussed the day-to-day nature of scientists and researchers, how young people can stimulate an interest in science and what characteristics should be paid attention if a young person wants to focus on science. In the second part of the discussion, the participants participated in a variety of experiments during ZIIC science theatrical performance “The Pirate Stories”, tested their knowledge of innovations and inventions, and tried the role of engineers in the DIC activity “The Plane Builders”.
Democracy Festival “Arendalsuka” took place from 14th to 18th of August in Arendal, Norway, and was organised for the tenth time. The event brings together a wide range of visitors from across Norway and other countries, and is a platform for politicians, industry experts and representatives of non-governmental organisations to discuss topics relevant to society.
Altogether three discussions were held during the “Arendalsuka” festival in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance, with participants from Latvia – on the Corrective Services work, the introduction of the Barnahus project in Latvia and the discussion of the State Education Development Agency (VIAA) on innovation centres and science. Visitors were able to participate in the virtual reality educational show “Briefly About the Universe”, which was also part of the European Economic Area and Norway Grants (EEA/N) programme.
The participation of innovation centres was supported under EEA/N programme “Research and Education”. With the support of this programme four innovation centres have been set up in Latvia – in Liepaja, Ventspils, Cesis and Daugavpils – to promote interest in the field of STEM for young people. Photos from the Festival are available on the VIAA Flickr account.