We spoke to Joana Moscoso, Falling Walls Engage Winner 2021, about her project and how the Falling Walls Engage Pitches helped to increase the visibility of Native Scientists.


What is your project about?

My project is Native Scientists and its goal is to connect children and scientists to promote science literacy and reduce inequalities. We have two science literacy programmes, one for migrant communities and one for home town communities. Both reach underserved communities and are designed to make science a possibility for children.


What made you start this project and how did Falling Walls Engage and its community contribute to the further development of your project?

I started this project alongside Tatiana Correia while I was a PhD student in London. This was in 2012 and our goal was to broaden the horizons and spark interest in science of Portuguese-speaking children attending London schools. Native Scientists has grown to become a pan-European non-profit organisation reaching children from different countries in nine countries. The Falling Walls Engage Pitches 2021 was pivotal to project Native Scientists and foster our transition from a voluntary-only organisation to an organisation with a mix of voluntary and paid staff. We have perfected our pitch thanks to Falling Walls Engage and disseminated our work among new and international audiences.

"Falling Walls Engage was a rare and unique opportunity for me to interact with like-minded people."

Joana Moscoso

Falling Walls Engage Winner 2021

In which Falling Walls Engage format did you participate?

We participated in the Falling Walls Engage Pitches 2021.


Did you experience an increase in visibility of your project through the collaboration with Falling Walls Engage? How is this noticeable?

Yes, we experienced it. Our social media posts about it reached new audiences and I had plenty of networking opportunities throughout my stay in Berlin. Moreover, we applied for the UNESCO Literacy Prize soon after the Falling Walls Engage Pitches and Falling Walls Engage strengthened our application. We also started a donate button on our website soon after the Falling Walls Engage Pitches and we were able to add to the donation page a recommendation letter from Falling Walls.


What makes Falling Walls Engage unique to you?

During the Falling Walls Engage Pitches I was able to meet fellow science communicators that have equity and diversity values at the heart of their projects and see their projects through a social innovation and entrepreneurship angle. You don’t often find people that have so much in common with you, so Falling Walls Engage was a rare and unique opportunity for me to interact with like-minded people.

Joana believes in science and innovation for the benefit of humankind. This made her a passionate scientist, science communicator and social entrepreneur. While doing her PhD in Microbiology, she co-founded Native Scientist, a social enterprise that connects children with scientists across Europe to promote scientific literacy. Joana loves spending time with her family and friends, especially around a dinner table.

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