On 26th May 2023, the consortium linked to C4S concluded the European project General Assembly, held in Milan, Italy. The Milan hub, integrated by the University of Milano-Bicocca and the GiocheriaLaboratori, hosted the event, which was attended by around thirty people from institutions in eight European countries. 

During the assembly, the strategic actions and activities of the previous year were presented, as well as those that will mark the coming months, all with a common denominator: the importance of science as an enabler of inclusion and equity. “Science is the best way to understand how the world works”, said Gabriel Lemkow, coordinator of the project “Communities for Sciences (C4S) – Towards Promoting an Inclusive Approach in Science Education“, in the round table that closed the assembly, which also included the participation of specialists from the University of Milano-Bicocca. Among others, Roberta Garbo, Rector’s Delegate for Disability and Specialised Disorders, Carlo Antonini, scientist and lecturer at the Department of Materials Science, and Andrea Mangiatordi, researcher and member of the Department of Human Sciences for Education “Riccardo Massa”.

The participants also enjoyed other activities such as visits to the GiocheriaLaboratori, an educational service and science centre for children from 3 to 11 years old, located in Sesto San Giovanni (Milan), the Bambini Bicocca School, an initiative of the University of Milano-Bicocca to promote research and dissemination of educational experiments in the field of childhood, and the B. Inclusion, a specific service of the University mainly aimed at future students and students with other abilities or learning disabilities.

This is the last assembly organised by the European project Communities for Sciences, which started its work on 1 October 2020, and is expected to finish in the next few months, with the achievement of these goals: to have an International Observatory for Inclusive Science Education, to have an image bank of inclusive science education, a style guide for inclusive science education and a white paper that will be useful when making decisions from institutions to advance science education for all.

“Communities for Sciences” (C4S), a project to awaken scientific vocations

The C4S project is part of the Horizon 2020 programme and aims to bring science in an inclusive way to all groups in society, especially those at risk of vulnerability. The project also makes diversity and gender equality in science education visible from an educational perspective.

The starting point of this project is the expertise of the teachers of the Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education at the Faculty of Social Sciences of Manresa and, more specifically, of the teaching staff and educators linked to Lab 0_6: Centre for discovery, research and documentation for science education at early ages, a physical space located at the university that collects a whole range of proposals related to experimentation and science, open to both school groups and families.

This research is also carried out within the framework of the Knowledge Construction Research Group (GRECC), which aims to deepen the understanding of how knowledge is constructed in different learning contexts, in order to identify key aspects related to the design of educational practices and how these designs shape models of knowledge production that ensure the democratisation of education and diversity in a broad sense.