Portsmouth Science Cafe

 Science

Science cafés have spread across the globe, adapting to different cultures and audiences, and are now popping up throughout New England, percolating discussion, raising awareness of real-world issues in science, and providing opportunities for people with shared interests to gather from all walks of life. A science cafés gives the public access to experts and professionals, who are also local residents, in a relaxed atmosphere where everyone joins in the discussion. This grassroots movement to increase community awareness of STEM related careers is gaining momentum in Portsmouth, Nashua and Lebanon, and new science cafes are springing up in Plymouth and Manchester. NH EPSCoR, UNH and the Portsmouth Brewery established a series of science cafés; now in its second year, 12 events have been held, reaching more than 450 people along the Seacoast. Scientists on the Ecosystems & Society project around the state are volunteering their time to engage in these types of discussions at cafés near them. The Center for the Environment at Plymouth State University hosted its first science café in October which drew 50 people at Beiderman’s Deli and Pub (despite a Red Sox playoff game!). New Hampshire science café organizers recently formed a statewide Science Café Coalition to promote activities, hold statewide discussions on common topics, such as the future of food or extreme weather, and act as a support network to those interested starting cafés in rural northern and western areas of the state. 

The Portsmouth Science Cafés, co-sponsored by University of New Hampshire, NH EPSCoR, and the Portsmouth Brewery, and hosted by Dr. Cameron Wake, provide a unique chance for members of the public to learn about issues in contemporary science from scientists who lead the research in the relaxed atmosphere of a pub. The Science Café, which is free and open to all, is held the Portsmouth Brewery’s Jimmy LaPanza Lounge. The Portsmouth Science Cafés are commonly held once a month on Wednesday Evenings from 6-8 pm.

Podcasts from the Fall 2012 series and Spring 2013 series are available for download.

For further questions or to be added to a mailing list regarding future events and broadcasts, contact: Evelyn Jones NH EPSCoR at (603) 862-1804 or Evelyn.Jones@unh.edu

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