IdeaMe is an online platform, which helps creators, be they inventors, artists, or designers, among others, to finance their projects through crowd funding. The Indy features and promotes one project every week, with the aim of helping the creators finance and achieve their dreams.
As a schoolboy, I remember hearing a science teacher selling his subject with the sentence “science is everywhere”. I remember rolling my eyes at the vague, throwaway statement and thinking science is not everywhere. Science is not in my ham sandwich. Yes, scientific processes may have taken place to produce certain ingredients, but science is not physically in there, I’m not eating a science sandwich.
Instead, I think of science as being one of the methods by which we can better understand the world around us. And Klaus Jaffe, founder of the initiative EduCienciaVirtual agrees.
According to Jaffe, a former professor at the Universidad Simón Bolivar in Caracas, Latin America is one of the most backward regions in the world in terms of scientific development. On his Ideame page, Jaffe recognises that “science is arguably the most important factor in propelling modern economic development”. A country’s economic success often correlates to its investment and development in science. Yet, Latin America, on the whole, does not have money to invest in promoting education in science. In fact, the region, as is the case in other parts of the world, is producing fewer and fewer scientists and science teachers every year. It is against this backdrop that the academic from Caracas, came up with his EduCienciaVirtual project.
The solution that Jaffe has come up with exploits the “globalisation of modern society and the development of information technology” in order to provide teachers and students with the modern science teaching tools that exist worldwide today. The aim of EduCienciaVirtual is to be an online resource that provides people with free access to existing educational programs, videos, books, games and experiments, all to do with science.
The first two stages of Jaffe’s five-phase plan have already been completed. The former professor is appealing for help in completing the third stage. The EduCienciaVirtual website has already been created and contains initial high-quality educational programmes. It has also been tested in various poor rural classrooms in Venezuela. But now Jaffe needs both collaborative and financial support to complete the website. In order to find, evaluate and upload existing educational material that is not yet included, Jaffe is appealing for funds and expertise. He invites you “to participate in the building of Spanish-speaking America’s future”.
Pooling and sharing existing scientific educational resources on the internet, all for free. It certainly sounds like a good idea to me. If Jaffe’s project succeeds, perhaps science really will be everywhere after all.
To donate and help this project become a reality visit the EduCienciaVirtual ideame page at http://idea.me/proyecto/618/educienciavirtual.