On 27-28th February, SciDF got the opportunity to participate in the YoMo Barcelona, a festival within the Mobile World Congress specifically aimed at bringing science and technology closer to young students.
SciDF offered an interactive stand and captured the attention and enthusiasm of many participants with an educative and entertaining activity in spite of the surrounding stands with highly modern technology.
SciDF’s activity invited children to solve issues that society is facing and to represent, for one day, one of the four sectors of the quadruple helix: scientists, politicians, entrepreneurs and civil society. Each group sat at a different table and read a letter explaining the complex problem. Once they understood that they were sharing the same challenge, but representing different sectors, they had to discuss and choose the best solution to solve the problem out of the four proposed in the letter. Each solution was represented by a piece of a jigsaw puzzle.
When each group had agreed on a solution, they disguised themselves as members of their sector and defended their chosen puzzle piece in front of the other sectors’ representatives. Everyone sat around the central table, presented themselves and their point of view and then argued their choice of a solution. Afterwards, they checked if their solution matched the ones from the other sectors. Plot twist: the puzzle was not solvable!
Participants were then invited to think why the selected pieces of the puzzles did not match with the others. After a moment of bewilderment, the students realised what the problem was: they had selected a solution considering only their own interests, the best solution for them. No group had considered the other sectors in their choice. It was then revealed that a better way to assess complex social problems was to share and debate interests, fears and opinions between representatives of the different sectors in order to find a common solution. The key to solve the final puzzle was indeed cooperation and this could only happen in the present moment, with the dialogue.
The take-home message was hidden in plain sight in SciDF’s slogan: Interaction is the solution.
The main purpose of SciDF is to improve the communication between scientists, politicians, economists and civil society by creating bridges. The success of the SciDF stand at YoMo Barcelona proved that it is possible to teach the importance of cooperation and interdependence amongst sectors, even through simple fun activities like role-playing and puzzle games. We believe that it is fundamental to promote critical thinking within the youngest, because they are our future!
SciDF YoMo team:
Proposal: Vittoria Spinosa, Yoran Beldengrün
Coordinator: Vittoria Spinosa
At the stand: Vittoria Spinosa, Yoran Beldengrün, Roger Ponce, Baltazar Silvan, Raquel Ledo, Abel Sopeña Rodriguez
Graphics: Mariri Vicioso Casañal