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Questacon is empowered by the Australian Government to engage, connect and inspire all Australians in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) through a journey of lifelong learning.
As Australia’s economy looks to continually transform and evolve over the coming generations, our mandate is to equip tomorrow’s leaders with the foundation skills necessary to navigate and flourish in an uncertain world.
Knowledge, skill and know-how complemented by partnerships, is at the heart of Questacon and our second campus, The Ian Potter Foundation Technology Learning Centre. Located in Canberra, both facilities use Questacon’s expertise to energise technology learning across Australia. Strengthening the supply chain of young innovators and skilled technologists to help students learn to design, create, and have a go at solving problems.
For more than three decades Questacon has been powered by partners to deliver activities across Australia. Questacon partners are committed to investing in Australia’s young people and together we create sustainability and longevity for real impact. The organisations with whom Questacon works share common visions for a better future for all Australians through engagement with science, technology and innovation.
Questacon’s success is due in part to these enduring partnerships. Questacon seeks to build partnerships with organisations who are committed to seeing positive and lasting impacts investing for the long term in the future leaders of Australia.
Marketing Communication and Partnerships Manager
Questacon - The National Science and Technology Centre
phone +61 2 6270 2804
At a Glance
In 2016, Questacon reached over 4.5 million people across all programmes, activities and locations including:
- Welcomed 487,691 people to Questacon in Canberra including 132,734 school students.
- Engaged more than 73,000 students and teachers in programmes delivered across regional, remote and metropolitan Australia.
- Eight travelling exhibitions reached over 1.5 million visitors in 10 national and five international venues.
- Attracted 1.3 million people to National Science Week activities to over 1,810 events.
- Delivered 661 science shows engaging with over 2.2 million people.
The Ian Potter Foundation
In 2014 The Ian Potter Foundation provided a grant of $7.8 million for significant new initiatives to engage young people with technology and innovation, this was The Foundations largest grant outside Victoria and the largest grant ever awarded in the areas of Science and Education in its 50-year history. On 29 October 2014 the Prime Minister The Hon Tony Abbott MP opened the The Ian Potter Foundation Technology Learning Centre (IPTLC) at Deakin in Canberra.
The Ian Potter Foundation Technology Learning Centre (IPTLC) offers a range of interactive experiences for students and the public to engage with technology and innovation.
The IPTLC offers free Questacon Maker Project workshops for local and visiting interstate school groups in the Maker Space. These workshops build students’ skills in creative design, innovative thinking and problem solving, and use high-tech gadgets and low-tech materials. During the school holidays the IPTLC delivers similar workshops for students aged 10 to 15 years.
The IPTLC is the hub for the national Questacon Smart Skills Initiative , giving students across Australia, particularly in disadvantaged regions, a greater appreciation of the processes and skills involved in developing ideas and solutions to problems and refining them into useful products and processes.
" Through this grant, the Foundation recognises that Questacon is uniquely placed to deliver this exciting project across Australia, inspiring young Australians to engage with science and be agents of innovation. "
Mr Craig Connelly
CEO, The Ian Potter Foundation
As Technology Partner of Questacon, Samsung Electronics Australia assists Questacon to provide STEM-themed learning opportunities for young people via the Questacon Smart Skills in-school programme for students, Questacon Smart Skills Teacher Workshops and through the Questacon Centre.
Samsung helps young Australians access diverse, quality learning experiences, helping them realise their potential through engagement in STEM education.
" Samsung is proud to support the Questacon Smart Skills program which complements traditional classroom activities, helping to foster new skills and learning opportunities for young Australians .
At Samsung we can see that the landscape of work is changing rapidly and the future will require different skills, we believe quality STEM skills are critical to future success in the workplace. We support organisations developing innovative programs to promote STEM education with the hope that this will result in students being equipped with skills for the future of work .”
Head of Corporate Social Responsibilty, Samsung Electronics Australia
Questacon and Samsung Electronics Australia launched a technology partnership on 13 August 2015 to inspire young Australians in science, technology and innovation. Watch the video from the launch event where a drone controlled by a Samsung smartphone played a role in launching the partnership.
In 2015, Shell renewed its long-standing sponsorship of the Shell Questacon Science Circus , extending the relationship between Shell and Questacon to a partnership of 30 years.
"The Shell Questacon Science Circus is an outstanding example of innovation in education. In its 30 years the program has engaged with over two million Australians thanks to a group of 400 ANU science students who have delivered the program. Shell is incredibly proud of this partnership and of the amazing contribution it has made towards the promotion of science."
Country Chair, Shell Australia
Following its sponsorship of Questacon's Imagination Factory—invent and play exhibition from 2007 to 2010, Raytheon Australia now sponsors the Schmidt Studio, which, via interactive video conferencing, enables Questacon to reach young inquiring minds in their own classrooms.
"Raytheon is endowed with some of the smartest, most innovative and capable engineers in our industry. We are a technology and engineering company and are intimately aware of need to motivate young people to continue their studies in maths and science. Our involvement with Questacon is a significant step forward in encouraging children to understand science in everyday life so that they are inspired to continue into scientific careers."
Managing Director, Raytheon Australia
In 2014, IP Australia partnered with Questacon to promote intellectual property (IP) awareness to secondary school students through the regional and national Questacon Invention Conventions and the Enterprising Australians exhibition. These are key components of the Questacon Smart Skills Initiative .
Celebrating and supporting the bright ideas and inventive spirit of Australians, IP Australia provides legislation that governs IP rights, such as Patent, Trade Mark, Design and Plant Breeder’s rights.
IP Australia and Questacon’s shared vision is to inspire the next generation of inventors, entrepreneurs and innovators by giving them the proper tools and mentoring to encourage students to pursue a career in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).