In Kerala, a café to demystify science for the public

‘Café Scientifique’ is the first such initiative in the State to popularise the subject

April 01, 2019 11:23 pm | Updated April 02, 2019 07:51 am IST - KALPETTA

Science is often seen as boring, difficult and mathematical for many, but a group of science experts of the Hume Centre for Ecology and Wildlife Biology here are gearing up to launch ‘Café Scientifique’ to promote science among public in an interesting way.

Café Scientifique, the first such initiative in the State, envisages to bring science back into popular culture by demystifying scientific research for the public and empowering non-scientists to comfortably assess science and technology issues, particularly those that impact social policy making, says C.K. Vishnudas, an ornithologist and director of the centre.

Science initiative

Café Scientifique is a grassroots public science initiative based on the French Café Philosophique model.

Originating in England, the concept quickly gained popularity and was adopted by other countries.

Similar but independent events have also sprung up in many cities using variations of the ‘Café Scientifique’ or ‘Science Café’ monikers, Mr. Vishnudas says.

‘We are planning to organise meetings of science enthusiasts in the district every month at a café or a convenient place, where one or more scientists are invited to talk to the public about new developments in science,” he said.

The project is also aimed at making science relevant, powerful and important to the public, especially the younger generations.

Various topics such as universe, climate change, evolution, genetics and human-animal relations will be discussed in every monthly gathering.

The first session in the series will be inaugurated by C. Balagopal , a starter mentor and a writer, with a special talk on “Science and Society” at the Cosmopolitan club auditorium here at 4.30 p.m. on Wednesday.

C. Sasikumar, an ornithologist and writer, will deliver the keynote address.


Karthika Chandran, a research scholar, will handle a session on ‘Multispecies association in birds,’ a comparative study between natural forest and shaded coffee plantations.

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