We believe that “the ultimate goal for science is to improve human life.” So in this Human Practices section, we focused a lot on the interactions between other people. We hold small workshops in and outside schools, questionnaire testing and also social campaigns to understand the suggestions and thoughts from the public. We want to ensure that the our project could be accepted and recognized by the public. See what we have done!
School science fair and regular club activities
When we decided our projects, we understand that schools should be the first place where we spread our projects. We took advantage of the school science fair and introduced our projects to our classmates. The project received applause from our fellow students for its close connection with citizens’ lives and we were even invited to make a presentation among all the students in our grade (with the principal attended). For regular club activities, we held regular discussions and reports on the current progresses of experiment at SEU.
Apart from regular club meeting, we value on trans-school club interactions between various high schools in the city Nanjing. Being the only high-school iGEM team in Nanjing, we wanted to connect our project with students and biology enthusiasts from other schools. Through club activities and extra-curricular activities, we have presented 4 times in our city, meeting over 200 students from different schools and different grades. We believe that such presentations and lectures could help them enlighten their interest in biology learning and begin to impact their surroundings with their own hands. We invited:
-Biology Club from IB, the School Affiliated to Nanjing Normal Univ.
-”Biology and Life” Club from Nanjing Foreign Language School, Xianlin Campus
-Class 2 Grade 5, Lixue Primary School
Not satisfied to spread the knowledge in our local community, we decided to take advantage of the online information communication tools like online video chatting software. Starting from introducing the basic knowledge about synthetic biology, to discussions about the ethical problems appeared together with this subject and to the illustration of our iGEM project, we gradually built up a national-leveled community for exchanging ideas in biology. We have conducted online communication with:
-The High School Affiliated to Xi’an Jiaotong University
-Singapore Dunman High School
-Huai’an Middle School
-Nanyang Technological University
-Sichuan Jiaxiang High School
Through these online and offline presentations and discussions, we believe we have made our own contribution to further the spreading of biology knowledge. In the future, we hope to conduct more conversations with schools from other parts of China.
Green Water Campaign
Cooperating with Amity Fund and the Government of Qinhuai District, we joined the famous “Green Water Campaign” in our city. The “Green Water Campaign” aims to bring problem of water environment pollution under the limelight by encouraging citizens to walk along the polluted water and carry on basic detection of organic waste (N,P, etc.) and heavy metal ions (Cd, Hg, etc.). Eager to improve the campaign, we persuaded the experts from Mochou Environmental Protection Association to add detection of Algal cynanotoxins where algal problem occurred.
Also, we encouraged our primary school listeners (of the above presentation program) to take part in the campaign and they really learned a lot. They carried on the campaign on Apr.4 and formed their own team named “Pelican”.
(see online report:http://news.eastday.com/eastday/13news/auto/news/csj/20160405/u7ai5496348.html)
For the inhabitants along the Qinhuai rivers (one major water body inside our city), water contaminatoin problem(including algae bloom) has always been their No.1 worries. In order to understand how they think about the algal problem in Qinhuai, we hope that these questionnaires could help us understand their extent of understanding of water treatment. On July 29th, several of our team members gathered at Qinhuai Community and sent out 348 copies of questionnaires. We also received online version of questionnaires from several companies and schools near Qinhuai River. See our questionnaires here. The followings are our analysis according to the results we received.