ASPAC and the Toronto Declaration

Posted on March 23, 2010


I’ve been at ASPAC10, the conference of the Asia Pacific Science and Technology Centres at the Otago Museum.   ASPAC is a signatory to the  Toronto Declaration that states

… science literacy is as important as other forms of literacy and numeracy. It is also a powerful tool for social inclusion.  Science centres have relevance to all sectors of the population and have become important meeting places for science and society. They operate across geographical, economic, political, religious and cultural boundaries. They impact the well-being, education, achievement and skills of current and future generations.  They are safe places for difficult conversations.

A new era of global cooperation respecting local cultures is needed if we are to successfully live on a planet with diminishing resources and significant environmental challenges.  Science centres can be a powerful force for good. Children who attend our science centres are growing up in a rapidly changing world and can become critical “agents of change” so that everyone can have a better future.

We commit to work together to overcome cultural, physical, social, economic and geographic barriers to engage and connect people through science.

We will work together to identify how science centres can contribute to the achievement of the United Nations Millennium Goals.

This is a perfect example of an organisation looking beyond its own footprint to the change for good.  They are themselves acting as change agents, and with a double multiplier, see the opportunity as promoting change agentry in their stakeholders.