MARCH FOR SCIENCE
On the 22nd April 2017, demonstrations were held in more than 600 towns and cities throughout the world, under the name ‘March for Science’. Greifswald also held its own demonstration on the town’s market square. The aim was to make clear that scientific knowledge, as the foundation of our social discourse, is not negotiable.
Scientists were asked to tell their personal stories on a stage which had been put up on Greifswald’s market square and to explain why they carry out research to the more than 400 attendees. The start was made by Prof. Dr. Micha Werner, who spoke about the Ethos of Science and the role of the Arts in this context.
Poetry slammer, Jonas Greiten, presented his very own take on the importance of science and two live bands played music on the stage.
Greifswald and the surrounding region are home to the University and several internationally recognised scientific research institutions with thousands of employees. The public event allowed them to underline that critical thinking and well founded judgements are only possible, if reliable facts can lay the foundation for information to be classified and assessed. Research and the classification of the found results are the responsibility of science and academia. Researchers and people who consider science to be important, made clear with the ‘March for Science’ that it is not acceptable that scientifically proven facts are negated, qualified or placed equally alongside ‘alternative facts’, in order to gain political ground.
The scientists explained that they feel obliged to communicate their research results and to discuss them with the general public.
The idea for the ‘March for Science’, a demonstration held by scientists in Washington, arose at the end of January 2017 in the USA as a reaction to a post on a social media platform. This stated that the White House, under the leadership of the new president, Donald Trump, had deleted all of the information on climate change from its website.
This idea was picked up across the globe within just a few days.
And so, on the 22nd April, scientists in Tokio, Accra, Dhaka, Santiago, Washingtion and in Greifswald too, took to the streets to demonstrate against post-truth thinking and cuts to research money.
The organisers of the marches in Berlin and the USA hope the ‘March for Science’ will not just be a one-off. They are now collecting new ideas.
If you have any questions, please contact us at ScienceMarchGreifswald(at)gmail(dot)com.