Discover the Microverse


Public Event
University of Lausanne
Wednesday 17 August

Discover the wonders of microbial ecology! As part of the ISME18 conference, the NCCR Microbiomes co-organises an outreach event to bring microbiology closer to the larger public. This scientific fair will offer a broad audience from the Lausanne area, as well as the ISME18 participants, the possibility to break down the barriers between science and the public, building trust and confidence in scientific methods and solutions.

ISME18 participants will have the possibility to actively participate in a number of events taking part within it. These include:

• A scientific image exhibition and competition.
Images can be submitted electronically with a caption in English and will be printed for you and displayed in the exhibition area.

• A scientific short film competition.
Films of up to one minute in length with English dialogue or subtitles can be submitted electronically and will be played on loop in the exhibition area.

• “Ask a scientist” booths, where scientists can give a list of three to four questions or topics that a member of the public can ask them about, one-on-one.

Panel discussion “Explaining the Microverse”: several science communication experts will discuss ways to improve and increase the effectiveness of how we communicate. The panel discussion is open to all ISME18 participants. The panelists are:
- Remco Kort (Micropia, museum of microbes, Amsterdam)
- Emma Hodcroft (University of Bern and Nextstrain) 
- Katharina Weikl (Zurich Graduate Campus)
- Beat Glogger (Higgs magazine)
Stephan van Duin, science communicator at The Online Scientist will moderate the panel discussion.

Scientific image and film competition

Winning filmmakers and photographers will receive a cash prize as well as having their films and images promoted via this website. The images and films can be any type of media (from microscopy to drone-footage to cartoons!) but should convey an important message or concept, as well as being visually pleasing and entertaining. The winners will be decided by a panel of scientists, lay people and science communications experts on the basis of 1) their artistic merit, and 2) how well they communicate an important message or fact. Additionally, a public vote will take place to determine the most popular image/film.
To submit, go to the NCCR Microbiomes webpages. The deadline to submit your film or image was 22 July 2022. 

The ‘Discover the Microverse’ event is held in the Amphimax building of UNIL,  about a 3 minutes walk from the metro stop UNIL-Sorge (which is one stop away from the EPFL).

The doors open at 16.00, and the program starting at 17.00, with the ‘ask a scientist booths’, the image and the film exhibitions by ISME participants.
The Science communication panel discussion is from 19.30 to 20.30 in the main lecture hall in the Amphimax.
After the panel discussion the prize winners of the image and film competition will be announced.