The European Robotics Week (ERW) was conceived at the European Robotics Forum (ERF) 2011 by the desire of the European Robotics community to bring robotics research and development closer to the public and to build the future Robotics Society. Since then and every year, the ERW has offered one week of various robotics related activities across Europe for the general public, highlighting the growing importance of robotics in a wide variety of application areas and the growing importance of skills in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
STEM subjects are increasingly becoming an important part of basic literacy in today’s knowledge society, and we need to continue developing and growing Europe’s future scientists and researchers to close a skills gap, which by 2020 will require us to have an additional one million individuals! ERW therefore aims at inspiring technology education in students of all ages to pursue careers in STEM-related fields.
Science education can no longer be viewed as an exclusive endeavour for future scientists or engineers. It has to engage in dialogue on science-driven societal issues, since only science-conscious citizens can make informed decisions. ERW2018 will take place on 16 - 25 November 2018.
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Simply because Robots occupy the minds of everyone. Tens of thousands of school children in Europe, who may have no interest in technical subjects, change their mind as a result of these essential interactions. The interaction with robots complements the overall teaching experience and helps to motivate young people of any age to learn not only the basics of STEM, but also to direct them on to an independent exploratory, self-motivated learning path.
Stimulating this key sector, especially through the youth and all grown-ups who want to join the many tours and events, has another, equally important effect: to raise awareness of the type of impact that robots can have in our society. Robotics provides a solution to many of the current and future societal challenges, such as: working in dangerous fields of work, or taking care of disabled and elderly people.
Every year the ERW changes the central event and hosts an eco-system of various events in the chosen location. The ERW2018 Central Opening Event will be hosted at the Augsburg Innovationspark, Germany, on 16-18 November.