• Connecting scientific breakthroughs with the public and building trust in science is of utmost importance to tackle the grand challenges mankind is facing. This is the mission of Falling Walls Engage.
  • With the Hannover Re Foundation as the new primary funder, the Falling Walls Engage Pitches take a next step in fostering Science Engagement with special attention to the realm of sustainability and climate adaptation.
  • After six years of dedicated efforts in establishing and refining Falling Walls Engage, sincere appreciation is extended to the Robert Bosch Stiftung for their invaluable collaboration and support in shaping this format.
  • The Falling Walls Engage Pitches will take place on 7 November 2024 as part of the Falling Walls Science Summit in Berlin.

Berlin, 28 February 2024. From 2024, the Hannover Re Foundation will take over the baton from the Robert Bosch Stiftung as main supporter of the Falling Walls Engage project, a global platform for Science Engagement. With the Hannover Re Foundation as the new primary funder, Falling Walls Engage will continue to pursue its ambitious mission: a better understanding of and public involvement with science that helps to tackle global challenges through evidence-based decision-making and contributes to the overall well-being of our society. Our aim is to inspire, connect, and showcase creative individuals and organisations that actively involve the public in science to generate mutual benefits for science and society worldwide. Launched in 2018, in collaboration with the Robert Bosch Stiftung, the international programme provides visibility to Science Engagement projects that involve the public in creative and impactful ways.

Since amending its foundation’s statute in 2022, the Hannover Re Foundation has actively supported sustainability projects, particularly those addressing climate change. “As a project partner, Falling Walls Engage offers us the opportunity to actively promote Science Engagement and link it to the topic of climate change, which is one of our core topics. By working together, we are able to promote innovative projects that inspire how society can get involved in education, scientific breakthroughs, sustainability, and how to give back to the future. We want to foster a passion for science and the confidence that big challenges can be tackled utilizing human ingenuity and curiosity”, says Silke Sehm, Chair of the Board of Trustees for Sustainability, Hannover Re Foundation, and Member of the Hannover Re Executive Board. The impact becomes visible as trust in science improves through participatory approaches that address and shape global societal challenges.

Over the last 20 years, traditional science communication efforts have mainly reached an already interested segment of society, neglecting those who rarely engage with science. Falling Walls Engage aims to spread scientific literacy with a particular emphasis on underserved and underrepresented groups, enhancing their capacity to participate in society. Each year Falling Walls Engage issues a global call for all forms of Science Engagement, focusing on impact, inclusivity, and novel approaches. Selected projects participate in a dynamic pitch competition at the Falling Walls Science Summit, with the most outstanding idea recognised as the Science Breakthrough of the Year. “The Robert Bosch Stiftung was proud in helping create such an important and impactful competition at Falling Walls and increasing visibility for inspiring Science Engagement actors globally and bringing more into the field. After 5 years and some fundamental strategic re-alignment within the foundation, we are shifting our attention elsewhere but are overjoyed that the Hannover Re Foundation is taking over as the primary funder from us. Falling Walls Engage is too important to end with our support and we are grateful for such a smooth transition. We want to thank the colleagues from Falling Walls Engage for this long and fruitful cooperation, in which we learned so much.” says Henry Alt-Haaker, Senior Vice President of the Robert Bosch Stiftung.

Starting 1 March 2024, the global call for applications and nominations of Falling Walls Engage is seeking the most inspiring science engagement projects tackling climate change. The 20 inspiring Falling Walls Engage Winners, who have pitched their project on stage in front of an international audience, will compete for the title of the Falling Walls Science Breakthrough of the Year in the Science Engagement category. This year’s Falling Walls Engage Pitches will be presented on 7 November 2024 as part of the Falling Walls Science Summit in Berlin.

“The mysterious realms of cutting-edge technology and science are illuminated by brilliant Science Engagers worldwide. We thank the Robert Bosch Stiftung and the Hannover Re Foundation sincerely for their past and the future support of this outstanding, globally active initiative.” says Andreas Kosmider, Managing Director of Falling Walls Foundation.
In an inspiring pilot project, a summer school on global solutions for water security in September 2023, the Hannover Re Foundation and Falling Walls Engage co-created a four-day workshop. The meetings brought together 40 innovators and Science Engagers from 21 countries to foster knowledge sharing, the exchange of ideas, and collaborative project development.

About Falling Walls Engage
The most innovative Science Engagement projects will be presented at the Falling Walls Science Summit, which will take place in Berlin from 7 to 10 November 2024. The prestigious science conference has been organised by the Falling Walls Foundation since 2009 and established itself as an international forum for world-leading scientists focused on scientific breakthroughs. Through its numerous projects, including Falling Walls Engage, the Falling Walls Foundation is to bridge the gap between the potential of science and addressing the paramount challenges of our time, bringing it closer to the public.
More information on Falling Walls Engage is available at: https://falling-walls.com/engage/

About the Falling Walls Foundation
The Falling Walls Foundation is inspired by the fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989 and the dawn of a new era of freedom. The non- profit foundation promotes breakthrough thinking and is building a growing network of leaders in academia, business, and the public sector to tackle grand challenges and share ground-breaking ideas with society.
More: falling-walls.com/
Press contact: Dino Trescher, Press Officer Falling Walls Foundation, press@falling-walls.com, +49 30 609 8839 778

About Hannover Re Foundation
Under the motto “Give back to the future!”, the Hannover Re Foundation helps to preserve creative scope for future generations. In doing so, we are formulating a mission for ourselves: In a time marked by great challenges, we are helping to raise social awareness and constructively confront change. In doing so, we focus on two areas: In the area of art, we support artists and projects that address social issues and focus on discourse and possible solutions to problems. In the area of sustainability, we support projects that help mitigate the consequences of climate change or that help people adapt to the consequences of climate change. More at Hannover Re Foundation Press contact: Verena Lilge, Verena.Lilge@hannover-re.com, +49 511 5604-0101

About Robert Bosch Stiftung
The Robert Bosch Stiftung is active in the areas of health, education, and global issues. Through its funding, the Foundation works for a just and sustainable future. It is non-profit, independent and non-partisan and is rooted in the legacy of the entrepreneur and founder Robert Bosch. The Robert Bosch Stiftung GmbH maintains its own facilities, develops innovative projects, and provides support at both the international and local level. The Foundation contributes findings from these projects to the professional world and public debate.
More at https://www.bosch-stiftung.de/en

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