Cork public celebrate Science Week

Cork Science Festival continues until November 17. Here, organiser of the festival, Mervyn Horgan tells us about some of the 100 events taking place
Cork public celebrate Science Week
Children Aoife Healy, Heidi Hardman, Matthew Healy and Cillian Jacob with Caitriona Tyndall (IPIC), Alida Zayers (CONNECT) and Mervyn Horgan, organiser of the Cork Science Festival.

SCIENCE is all around us. All day, every day we come into contact with the world around us and it never fails to fascinate us.

We are all scientists, be it your mechanic, your dentist, your teacher, your childminder, your gym instructor or your physio. The person that sells your mobile phone or instals your satellite dish, your travel agent or bus driver all these individuals use science in some format all day every day.

Cork Science Festival is taking place this week. This is a week-long festival of more than 100 science events and activities taking place across multiple venues across Cork from November 10 until November 17. It is part of Science Week Ireland and the festival includes a program of free public engagement events, community talks, exhibitions, shows and school workshops.

Cork Science Festival is supported by Science Foundation Ireland and developed by a team representing the best in education and industry in science, technology, engineering, arts, research and mathematics based in Cork. More than 13,500 people are expected to participate in workshops and activities. That is a very exciting prospect that so many people will engage in all things science over the week in Cork.

The aim of the festival is threefold, firstly to highlight the everyday role of science to as wide an audience as possible. Secondly where possible, remove cost as a barrier to access (all our school events and family days are free to attend). Thirdly offer events in non formal learning environments such as parks, community spaces, pubs, cafes, churches, theatres and so on.

There are many highlights over the week. One of them is an exhibition of photographs taken by mothers during their pregnancies and shortly after the birth of their babies will go on display in Cork. The pictures will offer an insight into the world of complicated pregnancies. “Developing A Picture of Us” is an open exhibition at Cork City Library, based on research that took place at Cork University Maternity Hospital. The photographs will give a personal view into the world of waiting, worrying, preparing and all the love and work involved in bringing tiny babies into the world. There will be over 30 photographic pieces exhibited, alongside artifacts from the hospital. Captions provided by the mothers themselves will be alongside each to give context to the photographs and the meanings held by them. The exhibition runs until November 22 at Cork City Library.

The flagship event for Cork Science Festival is a free, family open day that will provide hours of educational entertainment. ‘Celebrate Science’ takes place at Gateway UCC on Sunday November 10 and provides a great free day out for all the family. At this event there will be over 30 workshops, tours, stands, displays and shows with over 200 volunteers on hand to assist, guide and explain.

Celebrate Science will have activities on three floors of the Western Gateway Building in UCC, with something for everyone, including LEGO Robotics, Photonics, Disgusting Digestion, MathsWorks, Coding, Experiments, large-scale Science Shows and much more.

The most pressing scientific topic for 2019 has been climate change, more appropriately climate action or lack of climate action. This subject is carefully addressed by the work of Anglela Gilmore though her exhibition Artica: The Last Fragments at Wandesford Quay Gallery. Angel spent three weeks as a resident artist onboard a vessel in the arctic witnessing first hand the events of climate change.

A second event offers the public an opportunity to converse or challenge scientists in a town hall setting. This event is organised by MaREI and features a strong line up of climate and renewable energy experts on monday November 11.

We are so excited to bring this truly magical festival back to Cork this year. Cork Science Festival is a celebration of science events and we invite everyone, young and old to come and experience our program of free public engagement events, open days, science tours, talks, exhibitions, shows, workshops and school events. Cork Science Festival is a main partner of Science Week Ireland, one of the largest STEM engagement events in the Irish science calendar. Our team represents Cork’s best in research, education and industry across science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.

As well as free open days and school visits to bring STEM into primary and secondary schools across Cork, there is plenty of ‘grown up’ science too with events taking place at Edision, Crawford & Co., Blackpool Community Centre, UCC, Wandesford Quay Gallery, The Kino, the Rising Sons Brewery, and many more.

More information on all Cork Science Festival events available at

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