• Parallel Session D-7
  • Panorama

How Science Centres Contribute to the Sustainable Future of Cities

Thursday 16 Nov 2017
7F Saturn

Session Concept:
In 2050, two thirds of the world‘s population will live in an urban area. Making those growing cities a safe and healthy place to live requires a drastic change in the way we build and manage them. With SDG 11 we pledge to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. As science centres are frequently located in rapidly growing urban spaces, there is an unprecedented opportunity for our institutions to support the growingly diverse populations of our cities, to help address the challenges associated with this growth and to contribute to initiatives for sustainable development. This session will explore different roles that science centres play in addressing those challenges, informing the public and contributing to initiatives for sustainable development. Examples range from raising children’s curiosity, to working with youngsters to find creative solutions for real problems or involving the whole community in setting up a science centre.


Patricia Verheyden
Director of Strategic Initiatives, Technopolis®, the Flemish Science Centre


Yoshiro Miyata
Professor, Chukyo University
Examples of the World Museum Project will demonstrate how “making” in authentic environments can nurture curiosity about nature and appreciation for natural resources, which are essential for sustainable communities.
Tak-Cheung Lau
Associate Curator, National Museum of Natural Science
This presenter examines how a science museum can raise public awareness about environmental issues by developing an exhibition about the possible impact on health of careless economic development.
Gretchen Wilson-Prangley
CEO, Play Africa Children's Museum
South Africa
Urban populations in Africa will triple in the next 50 years. Play Africa invites children to discover the beauty of the natural world and helps them to become environmental stewards.
Sinah Magolo
Manager: Environmental Education & Awareness, Johannesburg City Parks & Zoo
South Africa
Experiences of how Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo engage youth in a way that reduces poverty and unemployment while ensuring sustainability and appropriate utilization of green spaces will be shared.
Nader Wahbeh & Hiba Burqan
Nader Wahbeh: Director of Science Studio, Hiba Burqan: Architect, A.M. Qattan Foundation
When establishing the Science Studio in Ramallah, Palestine, two models of sustainability were used: design and planning through public and stakeholder’s engagement and partnerships, and human resource capacity building and development.