Friday 30th september


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What does it mean to be a researcher? From hypotheses to results, a whole series of key elements follow one another, nested like gears. This machinery of knowledge can only work if all these elements are brought together and are functional. As seen from the outside, it looks like creating knowledge is a complicated but smooth process that the non-scientists would rather not bother try to understand. The European Researchers’ Night is the moment in which thousands of scientific facilitators and researchers across all Europe roll up their sleeves to create a real encounter between researchers and citizens. By engaging in a dialogue, research can be perceived in a realistic way : fascinating but challenging, and made up of a incredible sum of small discoveries. These are the daily life of the people working in research lab, treading softly, step by step, into the dark.

In 2022, the European Researchers' Night in France will show you how in the face of the unknown, of discovery, the unexpected is the norm, rather than the exception. By talking directly to the actors of research, you will discover the daily work that leads to knowledge, through a labyrinth full of dead ends and twists.
How can we predict the climate in several years' time, but more difficultly the weather in a week ? How can we anticipate all possible hazards in order to land a robot on Mars? How can a chance encounter change a researcher's entire career and lead to new discoveries?
Sixteen cities invite you to come and meet these persons, who work daily in order to advance collective knowledge. Through our theme UNEXPECTED, they well share their anecdotes of surprises, the emotions they felt, while confronted to results way better than they thought, or to unexpected obstacles that took year to understand. Various interactive activities will allow you to meet researchers face to face or in the dark, with games, objects, and many surprises.

If you can’t travel to a city with an on-site event, we also have ways for you to encounter researchers via the Online Speed Searching, happening on the Tuesdays evenings before the ERN : on the 13th, the 20th and the 27th of September.

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The goals of the European Researchers Night are

  • Attract a public that is not familiar with science by means of our offer of an exciting event
  • Ensure that the public spends a long time at the event (more than two and a half hours) to truly interact with the researchers
  • sharing “science in the making”: what are the questions, the procedures, the alliances, the successes and the difficulties ?
  • Involve members of the public and awaken the desire to develop and maintain a connection with research before and after the event

Each city bring his personal touch

Our evening events are all prepared using the same approach, will all rely and will adopt the same common interactions, like Speed-searching, The Game of Hypothesis, Meetings in the Dark...So 80% of the programmed interactions will be common but 20% is the personal touch of the manager structure mainly based on the stage Designs (Scenography).

Common interactions

  • Stage Designs (Scenography)
Playful, aesthetic and interactive presentations and special atmospheres are created in order to facilitate the encounter between the public and the researchers. The idea is to provide immersion into the researchers' world and highlight its attractiveness. The scenography is adapted to our particularly evocative themes.

  • Speed-searching
This is a variation on speed-dating where members of the general public meet researchers instead of bachelors. Every 8 minutes, the public switches to another researcher. Researchers come with an illustrative object to help get the discussion going.

  • Podcasts: “You will never guess what happened to me”
With many years of experience in the storytelling of researcher, we produce media content (audio, video, or text) to be widely broadcasted on internet and on the radio. In 2022, the researchers will tell a story of something unexpected that happened to them (A face to face with a bear, an annotation in an historical source that changes everything, an incident that produced great results through serendipity…).

  • HyPoker! A game of hypothesis (2022-2023)
Using large, printed cards (tarot size), a researcher exposes a situation where they had to make a choice, and present different option they had at this moment. They do not tell which choice they made, but let the public debate, ask the researcher questions about the different options, their pros and cons, and finally vote and explain their choice. The researcher tells what happened for real, but also discuss the other options, continuing more freely the exchanges with the public, based on the previous debate they had.


  • Pictures Gallery

    Immerse yourself in the atmosphere of the European Researcher's Night

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The French consortium of the European Researchers' Night is composed by 13 partners and managed by Université de Bourgogne & Franche-Comté