An International Workshop on Exhibit Development begins today at National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), Kolkata. Mr. G. S. Rautela, Director General, NCSM inaugurated the Workshop in presence of Mr. Anssi Ahlgrén of Heureka, the Finnish Science Centre & Mr. Prarinya Petprapant of National Science Museum, Thailand. The aim of this ten days Workshop is to develop new ideas for interactive and interesting exhibits for science centres on the theme ‘Electricity and Natural Disasters’. The workshop began with introduction of participants followed by a presentation on NCSM by Mr. Rautela. He hoped that the workshop would be very fruitful and new ideas would come out for development of Interactive and Interesting Exhibits.
Mr. Anssi Ahlgrén from Finland gave a presentation on "Going Underground" exhibition which was developed at Heureka, as an outcome of similar trilateral workshop held in Finland in 2013.
This workshop is in sync with the tripartite agreement among science centres of three countries India, Finland and Thailand. This exhibit development workshop started in the year 2006 when officials of National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), an autonomous body under Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India and the globally largest network of Science Centres, were invited to Heureka, the Finnish Science Centre, Finland for discussion on development of interactive exhibits. Since then, the workshop is organised regularly to ponder over development of interactive and experiential exhibits for science centres. In the year 2013, National Science Museum, Thailand joined the group. The themes of previous years workshops were ‘Underground World’ (2013), ‘Science, Sports and Nutrition’ (2011), Water (2010).
Some of the tangible outcomes of previous workshops are evident through development of ‘Measurement Gallery’ at Regional Science Centre, Raipur, ‘Mirrors and Images Gallery’ at Shrikrishna Science Centre, Patna, a travelling exhibition on ‘Water’ and some exhibits installed at Ranchi, Raipur, Guwahati and Bhubaneshwar Science Centres.
Among twenty five science museum professionals who are participating in the workshop, five are from Thailand, four from Finland and rest from India. From India, the participants are from Science City, Kolkata, Birla Industrial & Technological Museum, Kolkata, Shrikrishna Science Centre, Patna, Kurushetra Panorama and Science Centre, Kurushetra, Regional Science Centre, Tirupati, Goa Science Centre, Goa, Nehru Science Centre, Mumbai, Central Research and Training Laboratory, Kolkata, District Science Centre, Tirunelveli, Regional Science Centre, Lucknow, Regional Science Centre, Guwahati and Creative Museum Designers, Kolkata.
The workshop is organised alternatively in India, Finland and Thailand. Next year the workshop is scheduled to be held at National Science Museum, Bangkok.