Find out what’s on the minds of the people who contribute to Berlin Science Week in our new Community Portraits series. Christine Brummer spoke with us about what inspires her, what she has learned as the Head of Berlin Science Week, and what we can expect from this year’s festival.
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Christine Brummer and, together with my team, I have been coordinating and developing Berlin Science Week since 2016.
What excites you most about your job?
Firstly, the possibility to learn more about the pressing questions all participating organisations are working on. Secondly, the opportunity to create synergies and connect participating partners with each other to co-create formats for Berlin Science Week.
What drove you to start Berlin Science Week?
The idea that Berlin is the perfect backdrop for a festival that promotes open dialogue and discussion between science and society.
What makes Berlin a great place for a science festival?
A curious and open-minded ecosystem and the fact that Berlin itself is already a great location for research and science.
What makes Berlin Science Week different from other science festival?
Quoting a former US president: It’s Berlin, stupid 😊
What topics and formats can we expect?
Berlin Science Week stands for great diversity, both in terms of topics and formats. Participants can look forward to science slams, debates, exhibitions, workshops, and many other activities that will address the pressing issues of our time, such as tackling the climate crisis, the future of mobility, new developments in AI and machine learning, the challenges of global health, as well as very practical topics such as how to improve access, digitisation and networks of knowledge transfer at scientific institutions and universities.
With over 200 events, Berlin Science Week offers not only the opportunity to get an impression of the state of science but also to get involved and help shape an interdisciplinary discourse in science & research.
Who contributes to the festival?
We are pleased to have built up a steadily growing network of diverse and forward-thinking scientific institutions and initiatives over the past 5 years.
Contributions come from any scientific discipline or fields of innovative research in the life, physical or social sciences, engineering, technology or the arts. We also highly welcome transdisciplinary projects! Participating organisations come from all sectors of society, such as academia, industry, non-profit organisations, politics, and culture.
Why do you think it is important for researchers and scientific organisations to participate in Berlin Science Week?
Trust in science is crucial for the challenges the world is facing and the decisions (political, societal, economic, etc.) that need to be taken. I see it as a responsibility for those on the forefront to share and discuss their findings with their stakeholders (society at large), to gain that trust, and to receive inspiration and input. Science lives from exchange!
We all learned a lot in 2020, especially when it comes to digital event experiences. What has evolved and what has perhaps even been retained?
Berlin Science Week 2020 was all digital with fantastic virtual contributions from around the globe. This year, we hope to combine the best of both worlds and offer in-person and hybrid formats that engage Berliners and Non-Berliners alike.
What inspires you?
Seeing how so many people at different levels and with different backgrounds are committed to solving global problems with their scientific work and initiatives. We want to see them all in Berlin!
Who would you like to cooperate with someday?
Hidden science enthusiasts, trailblazers, and thought leaders worldwide: contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
In the future you would like to….
…join forces with international science festivals from around the world to create an international year of science engagement and raise awareness for science globally!
Can you already tell us about events we should particularly look forward to this year?
It’s still a bit early to say, but one highlight will surely be the University:Future Festival with the motto “open for discussion”. The Futurium will collaborate with the Silbersalz Festival to create an event on future mobility. An exciting new partner is Climate Change Center, which will participate with a CLIMATE:Lab. The Embassy of Brazil in Germany will introduce the Amazon Tall Tower Observatory, an Amazon research project. Together with Urania Berlin, we are also planning “Tabula Rasa – Science You Can Touch!” on 30 October, where the most innovative, creative, fresh, and extraordinary science and research projects from Berlin will be presented to the interested public.
PS: What is your favourite spot in Berlin?
Saturday morning in a quad rowing boat with cox on the Wannsee.