Council for Science & Technology Communication (NCSTC)
Schemes for Communication and Popularisation of Science & Technology
The National Council for Science and Technology Communication (NCSTC) is mandated to communicate Science and Technology to masses, stimulate scientific and technological temper and coordinate and orchestrate such efforts throughout the country. The programmes of NCSTC aims at building capacity for informed decision making in the community and promote scientific thinking. It is devoted towards societal up-liftment through dissemination of scientific knowledge in an informed manner and builds programmes with the help of different media which percolate down to every nook and corner of the society.
The NCSTC focuses on outreach activities, training in Science and Technology communication, development, production & dissemination of S & T software, incentive programmes, and field based Sci-Com projects, research in S&T communication, international co-operation, motivating students and teachers, environment awareness and programmes with a special component exclusively for women.
Some of its important successful initiatives, over the years include the campaigns over the Year of Scientific Awareness, Year of Physics, Year of Astronomy, Year of Mathematics, observation of the National Science Day and National Mathematics Day, the National Children’s Science Congress, National Teacher’s Science Congress, and Science Express etc.
A multi- pronged effort has been developed by the NCSTC including:
Communicating science using folk media;
Use of mass & digital media for science communication and popularization;
Use of Social media in science and Technology Popularization
Science Express is a unique mobile science exhibition mounted on a 16-coach, AC train, travelling across India since 2007. Science Express showcased the fascinating world of science, groundbreaking discoveries, cutting-edge science & future-oriented technologies for initial 4 years. In 2012, Science Express was redesigned on the theme 'Biodiversity' and for 3 years it was running as Science Express Biodiversity Special (SEBS), aimed at creating awareness on Biodiversity of India. Science Express has covered over 122,000 km across the country, receiving more than 1.33 crore (13.3 million) visitors at its 391 halts, over 1,404 days. It has thus become the largest, longest running and most visited mobile science exhibition, probably in the world and has created several records in its wake. The next phase of Science Express is soon coming up as Climate Change Special. More information on www.sciencexpress.in
National Children's Science Congress
This is an opportunity for brilliant young scientists (10 -17 years of age group), started since 1993 to popularize the method of science with following steps:
work in teams under a guide on an identified theme
select a problem from the neighborhood
develop a hypothesis and conduct field research
see patterns in data and prepare a report
present findings before peer group in one's own language.
Innovative projects are selected for district congress, state congress and national convention. Each state also sends two delegates to the annual session of the Indian Science Congress.
The NCSC has been organized in almost all districts every year with more and more schools joining the activity. Developing an activity book, training workshops for guide teachers, evaluating the research projects and coordinating the district and state level conventions are enriching experiences for a number of organizations. More than 10 lakh children are participating actively throughout the country. The national events with the themes selected for the past years are shown below:
Planet Earth: Our Home Explore, Share and Care
Land Resources: Use for Prosperity & Save for Posterity
Land Resources: Use for Prosperity & Save for Posterity
Energy: Explore, Harness and Conserve
Energy: Explore, Harness and Conserve
Understanding weather and climate
National Science Day
Every year on February 28, is celebrated as the National Science Day. The programme was initiated by department to trigger science popularization activities throughout the country and to disseminate scientific education about the current issues of science and technology amongst the citizens of the country. The programmes starts around the national science day and activities like lectures, quiz, radio, television shows, open houses and debate etc. are organized around a central theme.
These programmes are organized nationwide through the state S&T Councils, science and Technology Departments. National Science Day Celebrations
Effective science communication can change ways of community learning, peoples’ access to knowledge & resources, and societal paradigms. The science behind water wisdom, sanitation & hygiene is central to our wellbeing and ability to work. It thus addresses critical life cycle needs and complexities of social, economic and ecological nature. Thescarcity, pollution and mismanagement of water resources and associated too low sanitation levels need a national initiative. There is need to promote scientific temper and scientific literacy on ecological andWaSH (water, sanitation & hygiene) issues and new thinking as well on rejuvenation of traditional watersystems. The programme stands also for promoting informed choices and decision making. The initiativeis specifically aimed at –
Developing models in public guidance systems based on science communication, like location specific innovative initiatives for actionable learning and building field capacity for adopting scientific & best practices in knowledge critical domains.
Knowledge led motivation of youth for leadership and improvement of quality of life of specific target groups based on scientific approaches of ‘Being- on- their -Own’ and ‘Collective response’ to challenges and location specific problems.
Serving national priorities of Government of India like Swachh Bharat, Access to Safe Water, Ecological Health of Rivers, etc.
S&T Awareness for conservation of Resources &Sustainable development- STARS
Nationwide training cum awareness programmes on understanding weather, climate change and disaster preparedness for sustainable development; Grameen Vigyan Jagriti: A programme on rational use of pesticides, fertilizers, demystification and awareness generation about malpractices like female feticides, food safety, genetically modified crops, Biodiversity awareness related programmes.
India Innovation Initiative-i3
India Innovation Initiative - i3 is a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) initiative of NCSTC. Each year hundreds of innovations are received from across the country contributors include students, industry professionals, individual and grassroots innovators in various fields such as Life Sciences, Electronics & Communication, IT, Energy and Engineering Technologies. It is a national level competition for promoting the spirit of science & technology in the country. Students enrolled in AICTE approved institutions and others are eligible. For details please refer to www.ciiinnovation.in
National Teachers’ Science Congress (NTSC)
Initiated by NCSTC, the NTSC provides a forum to teachers of the country to enhance their level of scientific awareness. The first national event was held in 2003. Presently it has become a biennial activity of NCSTC. Besides teachers educators of vocational/open schools/teachers educators/DIET faculty/B.Ed and university researchers, scientists, technologists and activists are also eligible to submit their papers.
Various initiatives are encouraged to enthuse, motivate and inculcate, a positive attitude to learn mathematics in the younger generation ranging from identification and introduction of best teaching practices and resource persons; Capacity building of in-service teachers & students through training/ camps in Mathematics; Development, production & Dissemination of teaching learning materials (TLMs) like posters, Mathematics kits, resource manuals, booklets, models, etc. for Mathematics and research in related areas. Every year since 2012, birthday of Srinivasa Ramanujan, a great mathematician is celebrated as “National Mathematics Day” with the help of state S&T Councils, throughout the country.
Explaining Science behind Miracles
There is exposure on the training module aiming at providing basic skills in performing & investigating such miracles and based on science behind it. Miracles are performed by so called Godmen who want to mislead the gullible, but fact is that all miracles are based on various principles of science.
To encourage bright students to select careers in science it is imperative to sensitize them about science & technology related work going on various laboratories, universities and scientific institutions in the country. A programme, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) demonstration is catalyzed and supported by the NCSTC for senior secondary science students to visit S&T establishments.
Awards and Recognitions
National awards for science communications are presented every year to recognize outstanding achievements of individuals and institutions. Nominations for the awards are invited in the following categories:
Outstanding Effort in Science & Technology Communication - (Rupees Two Lakhs)
Outstanding Effort in S&T Communication through Books
& Magazines - (Rupees One Lakh)
Outstanding Effort in S&T Popularization among Children - (Rupees One Lakh)
Outstanding Effort in Translation of Popular S&T Literature - (Rupees One Lakh)
Outstanding Effort in S&T Communication in the Print Medium - (Rupees One Lakh)
Outstanding Effort in S&T Communication in Electronic Medium - (Rupees One Lakh)
Each award comprises an attractive cash prize, a memento and a scroll, presented every year at the national function on 28th February, the National Science Day.
UNESCO Kalinga Awards
The UNESCO Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of Science is an award given by UNESCO for exceptional skill in presenting scientific ideas to lay people. It was created in 1951, following a donation from Hon’ble Shri Biju Patnaik, Chief Minister of Orissa and Founder President of the Kalinga Foundation Trust, Bhubaneswar. Candidates shall have made a significant contribution to the popularization of science. Till to date, sixty-five individuals, from twenty-four countries have received this award. Six of whom have also been Nobel-Prize winners.
Many significant initiatives have given rich dividends to the nation. Some of these include:
Science based radio serials on various topics are produced and broadcasted by119 stations of All India radio (AIR) and through community radio. Some of the popular serials are: “Jeevan Ek-Roop Anek”, Rahiye matwaley, “Ankon ke Khiladi”, Radio Mathematics (on community radio).
Video programmes were made and telecast on DD. They are Challenge Chatani, “Utthan”, Ignited Minds I-II, Hum Honge Kamyab, Fossil Memoirs etc. Video CD’s on achievements of S&T in India were also developed and telecast.
Web based programmes
Interactive Web Portals on Mathematics
Web Portal on Planet Earth
Ganit Yatra in the state of Maharashtra
A state level campaign in the tribal districts of Maharashtra was undertaken as “Ganit Yatra”, a regional jatha Supported by NCSTC. Resource material in terms of dramas, CDs, ganit geet, booklets, calander etc. were brought out.
Training Manuals & Kits Developed Mathematics kit, Weather Kit, Simple Tasks - Great Concepts, LASER kit for Students, Parakhi, Module on Microorganisms, Vermi-Composting, Astronomy kit, Biodiversity kit etc. are made and disseminated among the children
Dr. B.P Singh
Head / Scientist - 'G'
National Council for Science & Technology Communication
(RASHTRIYA VIGYAN EVAM PRODYOGIKI SANCHAR PARISHAD) Department of Science
and Technology Technology Bhavan, New Mehrauli Marg, New Delhi 110016