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Great success for Kieler Forschungswerkstatt

20. December 2016

Horizon 2020-project “Marine Mammals” obtains funding of almost two million Euros

To further increase young people’s interest in natural science and to prevent shortage of specialists in the STEM area nine scientific educational and research institutes from Germany, Poland, Sweden, Belgium and Denmark joined forces in the Horizon 2020-project “Marine Mammals”. The school laboratory Kieler Forschungswerkstatt, a joint venture of Kiel University and IPN, is coordinating the project that receives 1.8 million Euros from the European Union. “We are extremely pleased about the three-year grant for our project”, says project coordinator Dr Katrin Knickmeier. “For the first time we are able to pool internationally recognized expert knowledge in the field of marine mammals and environmental issues here in Kiel. Together we tackle our goal to inspire young people for natural sciences and careers in the STEM area.”

One focus of the project “Marine Mammals” is to provide learning material for school teachers and students developed by an international team of experts consisting of marine scientists, educational researchers and teachers. The material is based on current research questions and introduces the students to scientific topics as well as research methods. Marine mammals are the main theme because they exemplarily reveal problems such as noise and plastic pollution of the oceans or the impact of bycatch in commercial fishing. “Next to a high intelligence marine mammals have strong social and communicative skills which draws worldwide attention to these sea dwellers”, explains Dennis Brenneke, project manager at the Kieler Forschungswerkstatt. “Furthermore, they are most popular which engages the young not only professionally but also emotionally with the discussed issues.” Extracurricular activities to arouse students’ interest in natural science include digital media, 3D models, poster or expedition boxes which can be borrowed by school classes.

“Marine Mammals” was able to succeed within the EU application procedure as one of only six projects against more than 200 competitors from all over Europe. German project partners are Kiel University (CAU), the Institute for Terrestrial and Aquatic Wildlife Research at the University of Veterinary Medicine Hanover Foundation (TiHo), the Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education (IPN) and the network Meeresmedien. International partners include the University of Liège (Belgium), the Foundation for the Development of the University of Gdańsk (Poland), the University of Southern Denmark (Denmark), the Havets Hus (Sweden) and the WWF Poland. The project coordination is carried out by the Kieler Forschungswerkstatt in the ozean:labor.

Kieler Forschungswerkstatt
Dr Katrin Knickmeier
Project coordination "Marine Mammals"
Telefon: +49 (0)431-880 5914
E-Mail: [Email protection active, please enable JavaScript.]

Kieler Forschungswerkstatt
Dennis Brennecke
Project management "Marine Mammals"
Telefon: +49 (0)431-880 5916
E-Mail: [Email protection active, please enable JavaScript.]

About Kieler Forschungswerkstatt
Kieler Forschungswerkstatt, the school laboratory of Kiel University and the Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education (IPN), is an out-of-school place of learning that focuses on various topics, such as energy, life on earth and nano-technology. Its key functions are to support grass-roots and elite science, as well as teacher training and development. At the ozean:labor laboratory, school pupils explore the habitat of seas and oceans and get to grips with current issues in the field of marine research. The laboratory looks at the influence of people on the ocean ecosystem, using examples such as eutrophication and overfishing, and undertakes projects and activities connected with the issue of plastic waste in oceans. The Cluster of Excellence “The Future Ocean” supports the ozean:labor at Kieler Forschungswerkstatt.