Science on Your Doorstep

Project aims:

The aim of this project was to bring the science happening both locally and regionally in the Highlands and Islands to the attention of local communities and provide support for those who would like to be actively involved in a more focussed and sustainable manner.


1. To create resources that can continue to be used by the local communities.

2. Build a network of local public engagement volunteers and provide support.

Summary of activity:

The support varied from background brain storming sessions, development of concepts, training of volunteers, sourcing of material to actual physical assistance with events.

Evaluation approach:

We included evaluation forms for all volunteers and groups during the project and these allowed us to change our approach as neccesary and also provide guidance for future projects of this type

What went well:

1.We have been very successful in engaging with local community groups and getting them on board.

2. Reviewing our methodology early in project so to ensure it suited the 'customer needs'. Result - we altered our approach to provide more of a total package of support to volunteers.

3. Building peoples confidence to 'perform' in front of strangers.

What was learned:

1. Engagement is key at a very early stage to keep the volunteers momentum going.

2. To look at things from a fresh perspective and hence investigate them from a different view point.

3. Be proactive at getting the audience involved.

Top tips and advice for others

1. Listen to the volunteers, their knowledge of subject and area is important.

2. Children and young adults like to get involved.

3. Parents will often ask questions if you prompt them and this is opens doors for wider discussions, so pay attention to those on the frindges of an event. They are often the ones who stimulate a good debate.

About this project


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Project type:

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Started (approximately):

Jan 2013

Ended: (approximately)

Dec 2013

Tags for this project:

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About the contributor

Evelyn Gray
University of Highlands and Islands

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