As part of its Curiosity Project programme of support for STEM education and engagement, Siemens has partnered with the British Science Association for 2017 to deliver impromptu science busking sessions in town centres, community festivals and other locations where you might not expect to encounter science.

We’re targeting under-served locations and people who would not usually interact with science, to show them that science and engineering can be fun and entertaining, rather than daunting and inaccessible.

Working through the UK Science Festivals Network and other regional partners, the British Science Association has organised a series of busking sessions throughout the summer, in different parts of the UK – taking in local festivals, urban beaches, carnivals and melas, and other family friendly community activities.  Colleagues from Siemens sites across the UK are volunteering and participating as buskers. 

The purpose of the programme is to reach audiences with low ‘science capital’ – those who would not self-identify as engaged with science and who are unlikely to have attend their local science festival or visited a science and discovery centre – but, after having experienced science in an engaging context, could be encouraged to do so in the future.  

In 2015, the programme reached 13,700 people across 12 sites. Visitors tended to attend events in family groups, and were predominantly mothers with children. When asked about science festivals: 39% said they had not heard of them; only 29% had been to one. 70% of visitors said that they were “a bit” or “much more” interested in science following the event, and almost two thirds said that they had definitely learnt something new. And, crucially, visitors said that they would be likely to go to other science activities in the future.

Curiosity Project materials

Siemens and the BSA believe that science should not be confined to the classroom or laboratory, and that it can - and should - be done anywhere and everywhere! 

To help foster young people’s and their parents’ interest in and confidence with STEM, Siemens has developed a range of DIY science busking experiments that can be done at home, over the 2017 summer holidays.

The experiments are low cost, and mostly use items that can already be found around the house. Click here to view the DIY science experiments.

The Curiosity Project is an engagement project by Siemens, developed in response to the need for 1.86 million people with engineering skills from 2010-2020. In order to meet this, the UK needs to double the numbers of engineering related apprentices and graduates coming out of colleges and universities.