New Attendance Record for Futurium
More than 760,000 people visited Futurium in 2023 – its highest number ever since its opening. On 4 May 2024, the theme year “Raw Materials” will be launched with new exhibits, workshops and event formats. And this New Year sees the Joachim Herz Foundation and the German Research Foundation (DFG) becoming the latest illustrious additions to Futurium’s circle of partners.
Futurium in 2024
Dr Stefan Brandt, Director of Futurium, said: “We’d already had a record year in terms of visitor numbers in 2022. The fact that 2023 saw a further increase of more than 50 per cent is a matter of delight for us. Our visitors engage in discussions with one another on the content presented at Futurium and actively participate in our workshops and events. We want to continue on this path by encouraging people to think about issues of the future and by giving them the courage to shape it.”
Just as the number of visitors is growing, the circle of partners cooperating with Futurium on issues of the future is growing too: Futurium welcomes as its newest partners the Joachim Herz Foundation and the German Research Foundation (DFG). Nicole Schneider, Commercial Managing Director, said: “Openness and a broad view of the future are important to us at Futurium. This is true for the exhibition and our hands-on activities, but also for the 15 players from society, politics, research and business that Futurium works with. We are therefore delighted to welcome the German Research Foundation and the Joachim Herz Foundation as new partners. The future-oriented activities and perspectives of both of these strong partners will be a great enrichment for Futurium in terms of content.”
The non-profit Joachim Herz Foundation promotes education, science and research. It is primarily active in the fields of the natural sciences and business and personal development, with a particular focus on supporting transfer and innovation. Other priority areas are application-oriented research at the interfaces between the natural sciences and engineering, as well as transatlantic exchange in projects between German and US partners. The Joachim Herz Foundation was established in 2008 and is one of the largest foundations in Germany.
The German Research Foundation (DFG) is Germany’s largest funding organisation for research and its central institution for the self-administration of science. Its main task is to fund research projects that develop within the scientific community itself and which are selected according to scientific quality criteria. With an annual budget of 3.9 billion euros, most of which comes from the federal and state governments, the DFG currently funds more than 30,000 projects. The focus here is on knowledge-driven research.
© David von Becker
After the final spurt of our current annual theme of “Democracy”, Futurium will be kicking off its “Raw Materials” theme year with a festival starting on 4 May 2024. With new exhibits in the exhibition and Lab, new workshop and event formats and new digital offerings, Futurium aims to draw attention to the global and local challenges connected to the current use of raw materials. Furthermore, approaches from science, research and practice will be presented with regard to the question of what a more sustainable use of raw materials – and thus a “resource-lighter” future – might look like in concrete terms.
Event highlights in the first quarter of 2024
The first highlight of the year will be taking place on 17 January at 17:30: in the company of Federal Research Minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger, Member of the Bundestag, and guests from society, science and research, the “Science Year 2024 – Freedom” will be launched at Futurium with a programme of stage events. To mark the 75th anniversary of the German Basic Law, the Year of Science aims to encourage the general public to discuss the value and meaning of freedom. Especially in times of crises, we as a society need a common understanding of freedom – one that we need to keep fighting for and achieving in a constructive way.
On 2 March, we invite visitors to join us at Futurium for a sound experience: from 19:00, musicians of the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin will be bringing the entire building to life in a walking concert. Musical contributions by composers ranging from Benjamin Britten to Steve Reich will be setting Futurium in a new light and making it possible for visitors to experience the exhibits in a completely new way. The musicians will be performing in changing formations in the exhibition and Lab. The evening will be rounded off with a grand musical finale in the foyer.
On 3 March at noon, the music continues: together with Ohrenkuss magazine, we invite our visitors to join us for readings with musical accompaniment on the future topic of “Mobility”. In the Forum, Futurium’s event area, authors with Down syndrome will be presenting their wishes, dreams and questions. The event will be translated into German sign language.
Futurium is the House of Futures. Everything here revolves around the question: how do we want to live? In the exhibition, visitors can discover many possible futures; in the Forum, they can take part in open discussions; and, in the Futurium Lab, they can try out their own ideas. One thing we know for sure today: in the future, we will have major challenges to overcome. How can we bring climate change under control? Which technologies do we want to use in the future? Does technology serve us – or do we serve technology? How can we take our democracy to the next level? The future also emerges from our decisions and actions in the present. For this reason, Futurium, which was opened in September 2019, wants to inspire all its visitors to engage themselves with the future and to play a part in shaping it. Since its opening, more than 2 million people have already visited the House of Futures, while further millions of people have clicked on its digital offerings.
About the partners
Futurium welcomes as new partners the Joachim Herz Foundation and the German Research Foundation (DFG). Futurium’s other partners include, in addition to the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, a number of research organisations: the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the German Academic Exchange Service (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst e.V. – DAAD), the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina (Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina e.V. – Nationale Akademie der Wissenschaften), acatech – German National Academy of Science and Engineering (acatech – Deutsche Akademie der Technikwissenschaften e.V.), the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft for the Promotion of Applied Sciences (Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V.), the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres (Hermann von Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft Deutscher Forschungszentren e.V.), the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science (Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e.V.) and the Leibniz Association (Wissenschaftsgemeinschaft Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz). The business world is represented by BASF SE, Bayer AG, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma GmbH & Co. KGand Infineon Technologies AG.