Leading Museums, Museum Leaders

QM’s World Science Festival Queensland 2020

Media Statement: A Wonder of Why world welcomes Queensland, Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Minister for Science and Minister for the Arts, 9 February 2020

The World Science Festival Brisbane, an innovative science and arts event now in its 5th year will present the largest regional program ever produced in the festival’s history, along with a name change.

Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Minister for Science and Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch said,

“This landmark event which is the only one produced outside of New York, brings people together to celebrate the wonders of science, explore ideas and debate the challenges confronting humankind and the environment.

“A record number of regional events will be presented under the new name of World Science Festival Queensland, featuring schools programming, stargazing, talks and demonstrations from Queensland Museum experts, giving communities the chance to get hands on with STEM.”

The World Science Festival’s flagship Brisbane program takes over the Cultural Centre from 25 to 29 March, followed by regional events in Chinchilla, Gladstone, Toowoomba, Townsville and Ipswich.

“I encourage visitors of all ages to feed their curiosity with more than 130 fantastic events, experiences and activities to explore, across the entire Queensland-wide program.”

“Since 2016, the festival has injected more than $32 million into the state’s economy and attracted more than 700,000 people to its diverse program of science education, thought-provoking debates and inspiring discussions about the world around us,” Ms Enoch said.

“The Palaszczuk Government supports the World Science Festival Queensland and its associated regional program with $3 million in funding annually, securing the rights to this world-class event until 2021.”

Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said World Science Festival Brisbane, part of Curiocity Brisbane, was an economic driver for tourism in Brisbane and surrounding regions.

“This event will bring hundreds of thousands of people to Brisbane and will support local businesses and local jobs – it’s a huge win for our tourism industry,” she said.

Ms Jones said more than 200,000 visitors enjoyed the festival last year, generating more than $11 million for the local economy.

“We’re encouraging visitors to stay and explore Queensland while they’re here and support some of our regional communities that have done it tough due to floods, fires and the coronavirus in recent months.

“This event delivers a great return for many communities in regional Queensland that benefit from stronger visitor numbers when people decide to lengthen their holiday in Queensland straight after the festival.”

Queensland Museum CEO Dr Jim Thompson said World Science Festival Brisbane, now in its fifth year, was full of inspiring experiences, electric conversations and engaging presentations.

“This year we will explore everything from the science of cricket and ballet to volcanos, climate, artificial intelligence and big data,” Dr Thompson said.

“World Science Festival Brisbane in 2020 looks at the Wonder of Why and will spark endless curiosity and have visitors asking why.

“Queensland Museum Network experts will also present workshops, demonstrations, conversations and talks that showcase our collections, research, scientists and curators.

“With 140 participants from Australia and around the world on hand to deliver cutting-edge science shows, share world-class research and help inspire the next generation, this is an event not to be missed.”

Standby for a spectacle of science at the 2020 World Science Festival Brisbane.

Find out more about this year’s festival.

World Science Festival Brisbane 2020 program highlights:

  • Prof Brian Greene’s new production, Einstein and the Quantum: Unravelling the Mysteries of Space and Time, tells the dramatic story of Einstein’s electrifying discovery of the General Theory of Relativity.
  • Science-themed trivia, comedy, music and merriment with Dr Karl and the Night of the Nerds, featuring science commentator Dr Karl Kruszelnicki, astrophysicist and Bachelor star Matt Agnew, ARIA Award-winning musician Clare Bowditch, and satirist and comedian Mark Humphries.
  • Brisbane’s new festival hub, The Nucleus (at the Cultural Precinct Eastern Terrace near Queensland Museum), will be the home of fun science-themed activities, discussions and trivia served with music and refreshments.
  • City of Science, featuring more than 50 exhibitors offering family friendly hands-on activities, displays and information on science, technology, engineering, wildlife and more.
  • Maiwar Green becomes the Osmosis Stage, with a weekend-long program of presentations, performances, discussions, music and a place to rest and recharge while exploring City of Science.
  • The Hatchery: Turtle Conservation Experience, giving intimate access to Australia’s loggerhead turtles and offering a rare glimpse of incubating and hatching turtles.
  • Science, art and design-based installations and roving performances by professional artists and theatre makers
  • Women in STEM Prize awards ceremony, with astrophysicist and Australia’s first Women in STEM Ambassador Lisa Harvey-Smith.
  • Schools program, creating opportunities for young minds to engage with STEM outside the formal classroom environment.
  • World Science Festival Queensland Regional program featuring star gazing, Cool Careers, Cool Jobs, City of Science activities and sessions with Dr Karl.


Media Contact:  Debbie Turner 0437 859 987


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