The Science Museum Group today announced a new Climate Talks series exploring sustainability and climate change. The public will be able to attend free online panel discussions and Q&As with leaders, experts, activists and campaigners who will discuss how to tackle the challenges of climate change. The programme includes talks on the impact of climate change on food security, India’s green revolution, and the UK’s power grid. Speakers will include Lord Deben, Former Chair of the UK Independent Climate Change Committee, Emma Pinchbeck, Chief Executive of Energy UK and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Professor Rattan Lal, who received the award for his work as part of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 2007.
Also announced today are new virtual events in the Open Talk series. This series connects audiences with an international line-up of cultural figures, scientists, and policy makers as they explore themes including race and identity, unconscious bias in tech and inequality in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). The new programme will also look at the links between mental health and gaming, examine racial bias in genetic databases and how to fix it, and delve into the hidden stories of LGBTQ+ railway workers.
Visitors to the Science Museum will soon be able to explore Zimingzhong 凝时聚珍: Clockwork Treasures from China’s Forbidden City. Opening on 1 February 2024, this major new exhibition will showcase over 20 resplendent clockwork treasures from the Palace Museum in Beijing displayed in the UK together for the first time. Visitors can also explore the mysterious hold that music has over us in Turn It Up: The power of music, a vibrant hands-on exhibition. Teenagers can discover an interactive world of STEM careers in Technicians: The David Sainsbury Gallery, or explore the creative work of engineers which change our everyday lives in the Engineers gallery. Families can try over 160 consoles and hundreds of video games in Power Up, see science in action in Wonderlab: The Equinor Gallery, or walk beneath real rockets in Exploring Space.
The Science Museum is open 10.00-18.00, seven days a week (except on 24, 25 and 26 December when the museum is closed). Pre-book a free ticket to the Science Museum here. For further details about other galleries and exhibitions, please visit our See and Do page.
How Climate Change Impacts Food Security
Wednesday 24 January 2024, 19.30 – 20.45
An expert panel will discuss what is happening to our agricultural land and food supplies as a result of climate change, and what needs to be done to adapt our agricultural practices to make our food chains more resilient in the face of dangerous climate change. Speakers will include: Dr Catherine Nakalembe, Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland in the Department of Geographical Sciences; Lord Deben, Former Chair of the UK’s Independent Climate Change Committee; Professor Rattan Lal, Professor of Soil Science at Ohio State University and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and Tom Heap (Chair), TV and radio journalist and broadcaster.
India’s Green Transition
Thursday 15 February 2024, 19.30 – 20.30
India’s economic growth over the past two decades has happened at a staggering rate. Its urban population continues to expand, increasing the nation’s energy demands and carbon dioxde emissions. An expert panel will discuss how India can achieve continued economic growth while committing to net zero by 2070, how this will be funded and the environmental and economic opportunities and challenges of India’s green transition. Speakers will include Gauri Jauhar, Executive Director, Energy Transitions and Clean Tech Consulting, S&P Global Commodity Insights; and Abhishek Lodha, MD and CEO at Lodha.
How To Solve The UK’s Power Grid Problem
Thursday 29 February 2024, 19.30 – 20.30
The UK plans for the National Grid to be entirely run on renewable energy by 2035 but a huge connection backlog means that many clean energy projects must wait for over a decade to be connected. How is this threatening the UK’s progress towards its climate targets? And what can be done to speed up Britain’s green transition? An expert panel will discuss this complex issue, with speakers including Emma Pinchbeck, Chief Executive of Energy UK, and Samira Ahmed (Chair), award-winning journalist and broadcaster.
Can Video Games Boost Your Mental Health?
Monday 18 March 2024, 19.30 – 20.45
As well as being immensely popular, video games have often been associated with harmful effects on mental health, particularly with young people, but is this the case? A panel of experts in the worlds of gaming and psychology will discuss the fascinating connections between gaming and the mind and explore how video games may be able to boost our mental health. Speakers will include Dr Kelli Dunlap, clinical psychologist, and game designer; Professor Peter Etchells, Professor of Psychology and Science Communication, Bath Spa University, and Ryan Pessoa, professional esports player and analyst and commentator for FIFA esports broadcasts.
How to Fix Racial Bias in Genetic Databases
Thursday 28 March 2024, 19.30 – 20.45
The field of genetics has seen ground-breaking achievements, such as cloning, genome sequencing, and vital research into disease prevention, and millions of lives have been saved and improved as a result. Yet most genetic research involves white Europeans - are we at risk of missing out on new therapies as a result? A panel of experts will discuss genetic data bias, as well as the attempts made to better represent our diversity within genetic databases. Speakers will include Professor David van Heel, Professor of Genetics, Queen Mary University London and Chief Investigator at Genes & Health, and Aarathi Prasad (Chair), author, biologist and broadcaster.
People, Pride and Progress: The Story of LGBTQ+ Railway Workers
Wednesday 22 May 2024, 19.30 – 20.45
This discussion brings together rail historians and railway workers to tell the stories of LGBTQ+ rail workers and highlight the work of People, Pride and Progress, an oral history project from the National Railway Museum to record interviews and document the experiences of people in the rail industry. Speakers will include: Anthony Dawson, railway historian; Ashlynn Welburn, Archivist, People, Pride and Progress Oral History Project, National Railway Museum; Raye Fullard, Diversity and Inclusion Manager at Rail Delivery Group; Ron Whalley, Railway Safety Systems Consultant, and Tim Dunn (Chair), railway historian and broadcaster.
Zimingzhong 凝时聚珍: Clockwork Treasures from China’s Forbidden City
1 February – 2 June 2024
Pay what you can, £1 minimum per ticket (under-12s go free)
Recommended ages: 12+
This new exhibition showcases a unique collection of 23 ornate clockwork automata known as zimingzhong, collected by China’s Emperors, and on display in the UK together for the first time. These opulent treasures will take visitors on a unique journey through the 1700s to explore the technical expertise, creativity and international trade behind these centuries-old zimingzhong. Visitors are invited to discover the outward beauty and inner workings of these centuries-old timepieces, and their historic role in early cultural exchanges between Britain and China.
Turn It Up: The power of music
Until 6 May 2024
Visitors can get hands-on at Turn It Up: The power of music and play with beat, melody and harmonies in a musical playground. This riotous new exhibition explores the science of music's mysterious hold over us and how it drives us to create, perform, feel and share. From why certain music can make us feel different emotions and how it might influence what we buy, Turn It Up: The power of music illustrates how profoundly music affects our lives. It explores the technological advancements pushing the limits of music while showcasing weird and wonderful instruments like the Pyrophone, an organ powered by flames.
Ticketed, daily passes: £10, annual passes: £15
In Power Up, the hands-on gaming experience, visitors can experience the evolution of gaming from the past five decades – from classics such as Pong and Mario Kart to the latest PlayStation and Xbox - while discovering the science and history behind gaming’s most iconic developments. With the introduction of an annual pass, visitors can receive unlimited access to over 160 consoles all year long and battle it out with multiplayer Super Smash Bros, create their dream team for ultimate victory in FIFA, or show off classic arcade skills with Pac-Man.
IMAX: The Ronson Theatre
Ticketed, from £10
The Science Museum's IMAX is one of only two screens in Europe to bring together IMAX 70mm film and next-generation IMAX with Laser.
Visitors can catch Antarctica 3D (U), featuring footage from the filmmakers of the iconic Planet Earth II; A Beautiful Planet 3D (U) which showcases the tasks of crew onboard the International Space Station; Hubble 3D (U), which follows a team of astronauts attempt to perform one of the most difficult and important tasks in NASA’s history; Under the Sea 3D (U), follows an expedition investigating the mysteries of oceans and the threats they face from climate change; and Asteroids Hunters 3D (U) takes a look at asteroids, their origins and the danger they pose to our world.
Wonderlab: The Equinor Gallery
Ticketed, from £9 (under-3s go free)
Recommended ages: 7–14
Visitors can explore Wonderlab, the museum’s popular interactive gallery, be amazed by live science shows and enjoy demonstrations led by a talented team of Explainers. The gallery’s hands-on activities will inspire visitors to engage with the science all around them, through exhibits including a giant friction slide, live lightning demonstrations, a large rotating model of the solar system and more.
Until July 2024, dates vary
Standard tickets: £70; VIP tickets: £100
Younger visitors can experience a night of adventure among the museum’s most iconic objects, get hands-on in workshops and science shows, and, until May 2024, visit the hands-on exhibition Turn It Up: The power of music after-hours.
Chinese New Year Lates
Thursday 1 February 2024, 18.30 – 22.00
General admission: free; VIP tickets: £12
As the Lunar Year dawns, the Science Museum will celebrate the Year of the Dragon and the opening of Zimingzhong 凝时聚珍, a new exhibition about Chinese clockwork. Amongst lion and dragon dancers and Chinese drummers, visitors can delve into the history of timekeeping, write some Lunar New Year poetry, or join in some New Year’s arts and crafts. Plus, all the regular Lates will be there to enjoy. including the chance to see our galleries after hours or to dance the night away under real rockets at the silent disco.
2024: Science Predictions For The Year Ahead
Thursday 1 February 2024, 19.00 – 20.00
What does the year ahead hold in store for science and technology? As the new year brings opportunities and challenges in equal measure, one of the biggest stories is the scheduled launch of the Artemis 2 mission to return humans to the moon for the first time in fifty years, but what leaps will be made in tech? What will El Niño mean for global weather? And what medical discoveries might we see in 2024? Join a panel of scientists and science journalists for the inside scoop.
Inception IMAX 70mm + Q&A
Thursday 1 February 2024, 19.10 – 22.00
Don’t miss the mind-bending thriller, Inception, in IMAX 70mm. Written, directed and produced by Oscar® and Golden Globe nominee Christopher Nolan (Oppenheimer, Interstellar, The Dark Knight trilogy), this contemporary science fiction action movie from a visionary filmmaker features an all-star cast including Cillian Murphy, Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard, Elliot Page and Michael Caine. Screened as part of the Science Museum time-themed Chinese New Year Lates, this screening will open with an introductory talk about director Christopher Nolan’s innovative use of time as a motif, theme and narrative tool in his films.
Free displays, exhibitions and galleries
The brand-new Engineers gallery uncovers the creative work of engineers which changes our everyday lives. Human stories are at the heart of the gallery, which offers a fresh perspective on the breadth and diversity of these important roles. Marking a decade of the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering, the gallery showcases previous winners alongside some of the most exciting engineering innovations of recent years. Visitors have the opportunity to take a closer look at iconic objects such as the first digital camera and the cutting-edge CMR ‘Versius’ surgical robot arm, as well as learn more about the remarkable people who invented them.
Technicians: The David Sainsbury Gallery
Technicians: The David Sainsbury Gallery is a unique interactive gallery for 11–16-year-olds which aims to celebrate the role of technicians. The new gallery helps bring the overlooked but crucial world of technicians to life, with visitors invited to hear inspirational stories and explore a variety of one-of-a-kind interactive exhibits. Step into Shuri’s Lab, a film set recreated from Marvel Studios’ Black Panther, to learn how technicians create blockbuster movies; try your hand at creating lifesaving drugs as a pharmacy technician; pilot a remotely operated vehicle on the ocean floor; or even control a robotic arm to discover the role of advanced manufacturing technicians.
Injecting Hope: The race for a COVID-19 vaccine
Until 12 May 2024
Injecting Hope: The race for a COVID-19 vaccine explores the history and science behind the international coronavirus vaccination programme, telling the story of the global effort to develop vaccines at speed. It unpacks the development of the COVID-19 vaccine and explores the logistical challenges behind one of the fastest immunisation programmes in history to consider how the pandemic response is being built upon for the future.
This stimulating interactive gallery encourages children to develop science skills using play in a fascinating multi-sensory area. From sound to time patterns, they can explore robot trails, water ripples, textured walls and more.
An exciting interactive space, created especially for children aged 3-6 and their parents and carers. Inquisitive children can explore construction, water, light and sound.
Free activity, drop-in
Dates and times vary
Join 30-minute walking tours with the Science Museum’s experienced volunteers and discover the hidden stories behind the museum’s most iconic objects and galleries. Tours are available for different galleries, with information available daily on our website or at the information desk.
Notes to editors
About the Science Museum Group
The Science Museum Group is the world’s leading alliance of science museums, welcoming over five million visitors each year to five sites: the Science Museum in London; the National Railway Museum in York; the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester; the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford; and Locomotion in Shildon. We share the stories of innovations and people that shaped our world and are transforming our futures, constantly reinterpreting our astonishingly diverse collection of 7.3 million items spanning science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine. Standout objects include the record-breaking locomotive Flying Scotsman, Richard Arkwright’s textile machinery, Alan Turing’s Pilot ACE computer and the equipment used by John Logie Baird to transmit the first ever television pictures. Our mission is to inspire futures - igniting curiosity among people of all ages and backgrounds. Each year, our museums attract millions of visits from individuals to education groups, while our touring exhibition programme and websites bring our creativity and scholarship to audiences across the globe. More information can be found at www.sciencemuseumgroup.org.uk.
About the Science Museum
The Science Museum is part of the Science Museum Group, the world’s leading group of science museums that share a world-class collection providing an enduring record of scientific, technological and medical achievements from across the globe. Over the last century the Science Museum, the home of human ingenuity, has grown in scale and scope, inspiring visitors with exhibitions covering topics as diverse as robots, code-breaking, cosmonauts and superbugs. The Science Museum was named a winner of the prestigious Art Fund Museum of the Year prize for 2020. www.sciencemuseum.org.uk. Follow on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
About Discover South Kensington
Discover South Kensington brings together the Science Museum and other leading cultural and educational organisations to promote innovation and learning. South Kensington is the home of science, arts and inspiration. Discovery is at the core of what happens here and there is so much to explore every day. discoversouthken.com