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How much TIME must be scheduled?

How long such an event should last depends on HOW it is designed, WHERE it takes place, WHAT is hoped to be be achieved, and WHO is invited.

A science café that puts experts and their knowledge in the centre and asks participants to listen to talks, ask questions, and listen to answers should not take much longer than 1.5 -2 hours.

A science café, which asks participants to engage in activities and small group discussions and invites them to walk around and move freely, may last up to 3 hours or longer. Consider the format most appropriate to your event.

A few examples for shorter and longer events:

The University of Botanic Gardens of Sofia ran a science café titled 'From nature through traditions to the table: Ethnobotanical data on using wild growth plants for food'. This event was held in the garden’s greenhouse “Mediterranean” and lasted 2.5 hours. It consisted of a talk about the ethnobotanical study of wild vascular plants traditionally used for human consumption in Bulgaria and the Balkans. This was followed by a discussion in which experts and participants shared knowledge and culinary experiences associated with edible plants and human activities. The setting and length of the event allowed the participants to remain active and engaged in the topic.
Juan Carlos I Royal Botanic Gardens, Alcalá de Henares University organized the science café 'Pollinators: An essential resource at risk'. This was a full day event lasting for 8 hours. The aim of this science café was to analyze the problems related to the pollinator crisis. This problem required input and action from a range of sectors of society. Therefore, a wide range of public was invited. This included experts in the field (technicians and researchers), policy makers, and general public (120 people in all). Thanks to the involvement of Brihuega council, the event took place within the castle of Brihuega. This town is the capital of La Alcarria, honeybee region par excellence, where the dependence on pollinators is especially important for the survival and economic growth. The event took place in July as the city is decorated with lavender handcrafts at this time to celebrate the maximum splendour of its lavender fields.


The daylong event allowed the organizers to cover the topic in detail. The morning consisted of a number of talks on humans and apiculture – providing a detailed background to the subject. This was followed by a debate and lunch. In the afternoon, the talks focused on the crisis of pollinators and again finished with a debate, conclusions, and recommendations. Finally, a honey tasting was organized. This longer event gave the opportunity for a range of experts to be involved and showcase the different stakeholders and aspects of this topic.


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 This project has received funding from the European Union´s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 710780.

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