Science Festival Owerri, Nigeria

Città della Scienza, together with the Pontifical Council for Culture and the student association ASCO, promote the first Science Festival in Owerri, Nigeria. It was the first practical initiative in the area, the first step in a long process towards the promotion and diffusion of scientific culture to all Nigerians, and towards young Nigerians for the development of Africa.

The project has involved three main stages.

The first step was a mission in Nigeria (Owerri and Abuja) to raise awareness and to verify on the spot the availability of the institutional, scientific, cultural and religious forces, either local or national, in order to undertake the concrete achievement of the project. Owerri is the capital of the Imo state, and hosts numerous universities specialised in fields such as engineering, biology and agriculture.

The second phase consisted in training young Nigerians who gradually became increasingly involved in the project. After a  selection process, 10 graduates students – both young men and women – from scientific faculties in Owerri, spent two weeks at Città della Scienza in Naples. Here, they were able to acquire various skills in scientific communication which were necessary for setting up the festival.

The third step was the organisation of the Science Festival in Owerri, which took place from April 26 to the May 4, 2009, including an interactive exhibition on science phenomena, science workshops on environment, music, health and chemistry, conferences and debates.

The Science Festival was hosted by the Archdiocese of Owerriand organised in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Information of the Imo State, the Federal Owerri University of Science and Technology, the Imo State University, the Polytechnics Nekede, the College of Education, the College of Agriculture Michael Opara, the Abia State University, the NnamdiAzikiwe University, the Nigerian Society of Mathematics, the Nigerian University Commission.

The project was co-funded by FINMECCANICA, ICS-Istituto per il Credito Sportivo, Fondazione IBM Italia, Istituto Fondazione Banco di Napoli.