US-Italy Cooperation for the Exhibit Fablab at Città della Scienza

The following proposal is based on the cooperation between USA and Italy: ASTC (Association of Science and Technology Centers) in Washington and the MIT Museum (a Department of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology) in Boston, and Città della Scienza (CDS) in Naples, under the umbrella of the Italian Embassy in USA.

This cooperation project will be part of the planning for the reconstruction of Città della Scienza in the coming years after the tragic fire that damaged the Science Centre last 4th of March.

One major challenge for the new Science Centre is to become an open lab for the development of creative programs connecting visitors, researchers and professionals in the field science and technology. This is the purpose of the Exhibit Fablab: a new infrastructure to be developed inside the Science Centre.

Main scope of this cooperation, within the priority ICT, Applied Mathematics, big data, robotics, Advanced manufacturing, is to develop experiences and labs in collaboration with the MIT Museum, that is recognized as a centre of excellence for the dissemination of S&T worldwide. In particular, the idea is to develop of an exchange program of activities, based on mutual knowledge, workshops and pilot projects, to transfer in the Exhibit Fab Lab of the new Science Centre some of the most interesting MIT Museum Studio experiences, methodologies and technologies in the area of developing exhibits through the direct engagement of university students, researchers and museum visitors.

Objectives of the project are:

  • cultivating in young researchers communications- and exhibit development-related skills
  • cultivating visitors’ closer engagement with the research and development processes of a technological research university.

The ASTC will contribute to disseminate the results of this cooperation within the network of Science and Technology Centers to stimulate new US–Italy collaborations in the field of science and technology dissemination programs.

The cooperation is aimed at:

  • strengthening the US collaboration around the project of development and reconstruction the Science Centre of CDS, through the transfer of expertise from institutions of excellence such as the MIT in Boston;
  • integrating the concept of CDS with the new function of an “open lab” for the exploration of new technologies and methodologies to project and realize the contents of the new science centre;
  • introducing the fablab experience in the science, technology and engineering field for the development of exhibits in a participative way;
  • reinforcing the value of CDS in increasing the interest of youngsters (and the general public) for science and technology general with new programs of co-creation.

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