The Science Centre World Summit 2017 has concluded
On November 17, 2017, at 5pm, the Science Centre World Summit 2017 organized by Miraikan - the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, Tokyo, Japan, concluded. The central theme of the Summit was "Connecting the World for a Sustainable Future". 828 participants from 98 countries and regions and of various backgrounds joined the Summit, and contributed their ideas during the many sessions of the event. During the Summit, strategies for the "Tokyo Protocol", which effectively expands the 2014 Mechelen declaration, has been discussed with the aim to enhance public engagement and create a concrete action plan on how science centres can contribute to global issues and the sustainability of the human race.
Special Session on the Tokyo Protocol
The Tokyo Protocol will become the action guideline for science centres from all around the world to follow for the subsequent 3 years. It pronounces new roles for science centres as a platform that fosters creativity and understanding necessary for reaching the UN's Sustainability Development Goals (SDG's). During the special session held on November 15th, the representatives of the science centre networks from around the world ( including North America, Europe, North Africa, Middle East, Latin America and Caribbean region, South African and Asian-Pacific region) introduced issues that need to be addressed in each region, and presented examples of how science centres can contribute towards achieving the SDGs.
During the keynote session, environmental economist Pavan Sukhdev stressed that: "It is necessary that all sectors including politics, governments, businesses and individuals engage in effort for achieving sustainable development", and "Science centres exhibits are powerful tools for deliver truth to many people". Thomas Lovejoy, a researcher studying the impact of human activities on biodiversity, stated in his contribution that "In order to make people involved in global issues, we need to talk about science to diverse audiences, use everyday language and provide easy to understand examples", and that "Science centres has the potential to play a central role in mediating such engagement".
In the summary session, the results of the summit were reviewed, and a panel discussion was held where the participants discussed the actions science museums should take in the coming 3 years. During the closing ceremony, Dr. Mohri Mamoru, the Chief Executive Director of the hosting institution, concluded the Summit by passing the baton to Ms. Silvia Singer, the Director of the Museo Interactivo de Economia (MIDE, Mexico) who will host the next Science Centre World Summit in 2020.