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Edinburgh Science

Edinburgh Science specialises in providing immersive, innovative and creative science and technology engagement experiences to achieve a brighter and more sustainable future.

Photo credit: Chris Scott

Edinburgh Science organises Edinburgh’s annual Science Festival: the world’s first science festival and still one of Europe’s largest, which features a range of creative events including theatre, music and visual arts.

In addition, they have a strong focus on education, visiting primary schools across Scotland with curriculum-relevant interactive STEM workshops (science, technology, engineering and maths) and delivering an inspiring careers event to show young people the breadth of options for their future.

They also operate a large-scale international programme and are currently the Major Programming Partner of the annual Abu Dhabi Science Festival.

This year, Edinburgh Science adapted their festival and learning projects for online audiences when lockdown was implemented just two weeks before the festival was due to start. While Covid-19 has impacted their programmes hugely, they have reacted quickly to find new ways to engage with their audiences, embracing the opportunity to do things differently.

The Challenge

As an Edinburgh festival, a lot of participants do not realise that Edinburgh Science is a charity that provides free and subsidised events to benefit adults and children.

Edinburgh Science’s challenge is to create a fun, interactive experience that encourages audiences to make a small donation when attending events.

Photo credit: Ian Georgeson

This would create an entirely new income stream for the Festival, allowing them to continue and expand their charitable work, and potentially providing a valuable template for other festivals and cultural organisations.

They are keen to adopt a data-driven approach to fundraising to establish how best to engage with their audiences for optimal results.



Earlier this year, Edinburgh Science worked with students from the University of Edinburgh’s Business School to undertake market research on current trends in fundraising, the findings of which will be made available to successful Challenge Respondents.

Edinburgh Science welcome any enquiries relating to their challenge and would encourage any potential respondents to engage with this year’s digital iteration of the Edinburgh Science Festival, Elements of #EdSciFest, which can still be accessed through their website.

To get a feel for their work, videos are available on YouTube of the learning projects, Careers Hive and Generation Science, and an insight into the Edinburgh Science Festival at City Art Centre 2019.

Applications for this Challenge Project are now closed. If you have any questions, please contact the creative informatics team at creativeinformatics@ed.ac.uk.


If you are interested in responding to this challenge please contact the Creative Informatics team.

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