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    Berlin Science Week 2020 – digital und global

With more than 200 events and over 500 speakers, this year’s Berlin Science Week is bigger than ever before. However, the 2020 edition of the international science festival is not taking place in person in the Brain City, but is instead freely accessible online from 1 to 10 November.

A lot of things are different this year in Brain City Berlin. The same is true of Berlin Science Week 2020. The ten-day international science festival is being held for the fifth time. This time, however, visitors from all over the world won’t have to come to Berlin to take part in the science summit in person: they can participate in Berlin Science Week at home. Almost all of it will take place online.

More than 200 events with over 500 speakers are on the digital agenda of the science festival being held 1 to 10 November; this year’s edition has a global focus. In addition to Berlin universities, institutions from over 80 countries are taking part. Renowned universities such as Oxford and Harvard are included as well as universities in Africa, Asia, and Australia. 

 “Berlin deliberately focuses on science, research, and innovation and on close international dialogue,” said Michael Müller, Governing Mayor of Berlin, highlighting the importance of cross-border scientific exchange and transparent science communication. The experiences of the past months have shown “how important it is that science explain its working methods and its findings well beyond the specialist world and make it clear that conflict and further development are part of its very nature, as much as technical and national collaboration across borders.”

Image: Berlin Science Week 2020

Berlin Science Week 2020: a wide range of topics

This year’s Berlin Science Week is covering a wide range of topics, including: biotech, climate change, robotics, even an analysis of humour in World War II. And, of course, it will address the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on science and society. Virtual insights into laboratories are also scheduled, as are panel discussions, exhibitions, workshops, lectures, performances, and science slams. 

The “Daily Highlights” will be a central component of the digital Berlin Science Week. Every day at 1 p.m. Berlin time (CET), a 15-minute show will present the highlights of the day. 

With more than 900 nominations from 111 countries, the Falling Walls Conference will feature the groundbreaking research results of some 600 finalists, including the ten projects named “Falling Walls Breakthrough of the Year” by an international jury. They will present their work at the grand finale to be held 9 November from 1 pm to 3 pm Berlin time (CET). 

A panel discussion at the Futurium on 5 November also promises to be exciting: science journalist Ranga Yogeshwar and YouTuber Rezo will discuss science journalism and the power of influencers. Among other things, they will discuss the extent to which social networks are endangering democracy in this COVID-19 era. Ranga Yogeshwar: “Corona is the first pandemic that has taken place in the age of social networks. It brings with it a completely different communication grammar, which also has massive consequences in relation to science communication.”

Anyone who would like to participate in Berlin Week 2020 can register for free online.

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