What's "Next" in the post-truth era? Find out at the 2017 Canadian Association of Science Centres Annual Conference

Award-winning Canadian Author Sheila Watt-Cloutier to reveal the big picture of 21st century leadership

TORONTO, March 28, 2017 /CNW/ - Advocate and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Sheila Watt-Cloutier will present her new model for 21st century leadership at the Ontario Science Centre on May 6, as keynote speaker of the 2017 Canadian Association of Science Centres (CASC) Annual Conference. Sharing her passion on the urgency of climate change and its connection to today's broader public issues, the author of Canada Reads 2017 selection The Right To Be Cold will provide her big picture vision of where we are and where we are headed.

"Science literacy is a prerequisite for meaningful democratic participation in our knowledge-based technological society," said Dr. Maurice Bitran, CEO of the Ontario Science Centre. "The Canadian science centres that CASC represents play a pivotal role in translating scientific and engineering advances to over eight million people who visit science centres annually. The Ontario Science Centre is proud to host CASC's annual conference which helps to increase the public's engagement with science in Canada."

Providing informal learning institution professionals with an opportunity to build on their contributions to advance science programming and develop creative educational partnerships, Next brings together leading educators from science centres, museums, aquariums and planetariums for three days of leading-edge keynote speakers, sessions and workshops.

"This annual conference brings together professionals from the Canadian science centre community to share best practices in science communication," said CASC Executive Director, Stephanie Deschenes. "In addition to speakers like Sheila Watt-Cloutier, presenters will address such topics as communicating science in a post-truth era, controversial science exhibitions and enhancing Canada's science culture. These programs are intended to help science centres learn from each other, build on successes and continue to be leaders in informal science engagement."

Additional conference topics delve into such issues as how to compete for share of voice in the digital age and how to develop new models for public engagement. Special speaker, museum visionary and author Nina Simon, Executive Director, Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History, will highlight the vital work cultural institutions play in diverse communities. The intimate meeting also features hands-on pre-conference excursion activities, as well as a tradeshow and national awards gala.

As conference host, the Ontario Science Centre offers a variety of interactive science and technology experiences. Sesquicentennial programming includes three new visitor offerings that celebrate Canadian science and innovation:

  • Canada 150: Discovery Way, an installation that celebrates Canadian innovation and ingenuity in science and in everyday life
  • The Energy Show, an engaging theatrical presentation that explores the practical applications and implications of energy consumption
  • Legacy, an award-winning sculpture that showcases the interaction of science, nature, and art.

Next: The 2017 Canadian Association of Science Centres Annual Conference will be held at the Ontario Science Centre from May 4-6, 2017. For more information, visit: http://www.canadiansciencecentres.ca/conference/

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SOURCE Ontario Science Centre

For further information: Media contacts: Anna Relyea, Director, Strategic Communications, 416-696-3273 | c: 416-668-1967, Anna.Relyea@osc.on.ca; Jefferson Darrell, Media Relations Officer, 416-696-3154, Jefferson.Darrell@osc.on.ca


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