India assisting neighbours in science education, communication

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India assisting neighbours in science education, communication

Setting up a planetarium in Mauritius,
strengthening basic science education in
Nepal and upgrading Bangladesh's
science museum are on the agenda of
India's National Council of Science
Museums (NCSM) in the coming months
to help the neighbours communicate
science effectively to their people.
This apart, the Kolkata-headquartered
NCSM, which functions as a society
under the union ministry of culture, is
launching a "big project" in online
science communication and grooming
science teachers in the country.
"Since we have the expertise in
designing and running science centres
across India, we will provide the
necessary know-how, scientific inputs,
equipment and exhibitions to our
neighbours to strengthen their science
communication as part of our cultural
relations exchange, NCSM director
general G.S. Rautela told IANS in an
interview here.
The Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre (RGSC)
in Mauritius was set up by the UPA
government in 2004 and now as part of
its second phase of upgradation and
expansion, a planetarium, possibly the
island nation's first, is being established.
"We are adding a planetarium and new
exhibition halls. We have to look for
local needs. For example, Mauritius
being very close to sea, we would like to
do an exhibition on ocean science. They
also want an exhibition on space and
astronomy because the planetarium is
coming up," explained Rautela about the
specifics.
India provided the exhibits for the RGSC
at an approximate cost of Rs.5 crore
($756,000). India also helped in the
physical installation of these exhibits
and in training the technical staff
(curators) who would be manning and
maintaining these exhibits.
For the second phase, which includes the
planetarium and upgradation work,
India will provide Rs.10 crore, said
Rautela.
For the Himalayan nation of Nepal, the
impetus is on improving science
education.
"We also have a proposal to do a science
centre in Nepal. Their basic need is to
improve their science education and so
the name of the centre is science
learning centre. We want to give them
basic sciences which will help children to
learn the fundamentals," Rautela said.
India is investing Rs.5 crore for the
project and so far, the conceptualisation
and design, everything has been done,
said Rautela, adding though it was
delayed a bit, the project is "live" and
construction will start "shortly".
The director general is travelling to
Bangladesh early next month to
"finalise" details of the country's
requirements.
"We will see what their needs are, make
a scheme and then deliver it. We will be
making exhibits and upgrading their
science museum," he informed.
Back in India, NCSM is branching out
from its physical science centres to
virtual ones for wider reach.
"Currently there are 48 centres and we
are adding 21. But now, we are also
developing virtual experiences. Lots of
people can't come to science centres. So
we will provide an experience online via
a special portal. This will include virtual
exhibitions. It will be launched in a
couple of months," Rautela said.
Additionally, the NCSM will also nurture
science teachers in schools.
"We are taking up a big programme to
make science education interesting by
nurturing science teachers in schools
under the Rashtriya Avishkar Yojana
(launched by the Narendra Modi
government this year). They will be
groomed through workshops and courses at the science centres across India so that science education can be transacted with a hands-on approach and with experiments," Rautela said.
 

Srinivas_K

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we have the potential and these programs will extended to various parts of the world in the coming decades.


India assisting neighbours in science education, communication

Setting up a planetarium in Mauritius,
strengthening basic science education in
Nepal and upgrading Bangladesh's
science museum are on the agenda of
India's National Council of Science
Museums (NCSM) in the coming months
to help the neighbours communicate
science effectively to their people.
This apart, the Kolkata-headquartered
NCSM, which functions as a society
under the union ministry of culture, is
launching a "big project" in online
science communication and grooming
science teachers in the country.
"Since we have the expertise in
designing and running science centres
across India, we will provide the
necessary know-how, scientific inputs,
equipment and exhibitions to our
neighbours to strengthen their science
communication as part of our cultural
relations exchange, NCSM director
general G.S. Rautela told IANS in an
interview here.
The Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre (RGSC)
in Mauritius was set up by the UPA
government in 2004 and now as part of
its second phase of upgradation and
expansion, a planetarium, possibly the
island nation's first, is being established.
"We are adding a planetarium and new
exhibition halls. We have to look for
local needs. For example, Mauritius
being very close to sea, we would like to
do an exhibition on ocean science. They
also want an exhibition on space and
astronomy because the planetarium is
coming up," explained Rautela about the
specifics.
India provided the exhibits for the RGSC
at an approximate cost of Rs.5 crore
($756,000). India also helped in the
physical installation of these exhibits
and in training the technical staff
(curators) who would be manning and
maintaining these exhibits.
For the second phase, which includes the
planetarium and upgradation work,
India will provide Rs.10 crore, said
Rautela.
For the Himalayan nation of Nepal, the
impetus is on improving science
education.
"We also have a proposal to do a science
centre in Nepal. Their basic need is to
improve their science education and so
the name of the centre is science
learning centre. We want to give them
basic sciences which will help children to
learn the fundamentals," Rautela said.
India is investing Rs.5 crore for the
project and so far, the conceptualisation
and design, everything has been done,
said Rautela, adding though it was
delayed a bit, the project is "live" and
construction will start "shortly".
The director general is travelling to
Bangladesh early next month to
"finalise" details of the country's
requirements.
"We will see what their needs are, make
a scheme and then deliver it. We will be
making exhibits and upgrading their
science museum," he informed.
Back in India, NCSM is branching out
from its physical science centres to
virtual ones for wider reach.
"Currently there are 48 centres and we
are adding 21. But now, we are also
developing virtual experiences. Lots of
people can't come to science centres. So
we will provide an experience online via
a special portal. This will include virtual
exhibitions. It will be launched in a
couple of months," Rautela said.
Additionally, the NCSM will also nurture
science teachers in schools.
"We are taking up a big programme to
make science education interesting by
nurturing science teachers in schools
under the Rashtriya Avishkar Yojana
(launched by the Narendra Modi
government this year). They will be
groomed through workshops and courses at the science centres across India so that science education can be transacted with a hands-on approach and with experiments," Rautela said.
 

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