Mindsets + Missions: Xplore! Project Receives UK Research and Innovation Funding to Pioneer Community-Centered Science Centre Development

Xplore! Science Discovery Centre is proud to announce their participation in the Mindsets + Missions project. The Xplore! project titled “A Place of Lifelong Learning,” focuses on co-producing science centre experiences with community groups. Xplore! will be working with KIM-Inspire, Dynamic Voice, Contact Club, and Arts from the Armchair through a series of six bespoke co-production sessions. The participants will work together to develop a range of activities for their own use. These co-development sessions aim to foster deeper relations with the community groups to transform Xplore! Science Discovery Centre into a place of lifelong learning.  

Collectively, 12 UK museums and science centres, have been awarded £827,945 in funding from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). The program, led by the Museums Association in partnership with the Association for Science and Discovery Centres and The Liminal Space, aims to empower museums and science centres to explore innovative ways of serving their communities through research-related initiatives.   

Both KIM-Inspire and Dynamic have visited Xplore! to start to develop their ideas for the activities. Barbara Masters from iCan Connector with KIM-Inspire said “Our KIM clients are absolutely LOVING the sessions with Xplore and the Missions and Mindsets project. They look forward to each Thursday and they are so vibrant and vocal in the sessions, it’s wonderful to see!  

 The group’s confidence as a whole has improved and everyone gets fully involved, sharing ideas and really wants the project to be a success.”  

Dawn Pavey, Projects Officer said “Xplore! is proud of the work we have done in the past to develop and co-create projects with our local community groups. We are delighted to be able to continue this work with the new Missions and Mindsets project. Science engagement is so much more powerful when the community feels listened to and this project is a perfect opportunity to do this.   

We are very excited to see what these groups develop and can’t wait to see what comes out of this project.”  

Tom Saunders, Head of Public Engagement from the UKRI  With our new public engagement strategy, UKRI’s ambition is to break down the barriers between research, innovation and society. We are excited to be working with these 12 organisations to explore the diverse ways that museums and science centres can open up research and innovation and connect with underrepresented groups.   

Through this work we seek to put inclusivity at the heart of future museum and science centre engagement with research and innovation.”  

As the project continues Xplore! will be hosting a range of activities for these groups and will be releasing more details of the finished activities. For further information about the Xplore! and its participation in the Mindsets + Missions program, please contact: projects@xplorescience.co.uk 

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