National Science Week 2018

National Science Week kicks off on 11 August. Meet scientists, discuss hot topics, do hands-on science and celebrate the cultural and economic contribution of science to society by participating in some of the 2000 events on offer around the country, with more than 200 in Sydney alone!

The National Science Week campaign runs offers all kinds of ways for community members to connect  with scientists as they showcase cutting edge research.

Regional events

  • The Arts Vs Science festival in Lismore on 18 August is a petri dish of creative exploration, its paint palette of scientific discovery. Created by the Northern Rivers Science Hub, this one day arts, science and music festival is a multi-dimensional exploration of the intersection of Art and Science.
  • In Armidale discover why things are not always what they seem on 25 August in A Night of Illusions. Experience firsthand cognitive and body illusions that reveal gaps in our perception of reality. Then chat one-on-one with experts about what these experiences reveal about how our brains make sense of the world.
  • The second Illawarra Flame Festival will take place on Sunday 19 August at Wisemans Park, Gwynneville. The exciting program includes interactive displays, live music, children’s performances, 3D printing workshops, fire busking and plenty more. Activities start from 10 am till 2 pm in the park and will conclude with extrordinary theatre and a flame-inspired Poetry Slam at 2 pm.
  • ​The Bega Valley Science Festival this year presents Questacon’s Fascinating Science interactive exhibition along with displays and stalls from a variety of local science organisations. Open each day from 10am – 3pm at the Bega Commemorative Hall,  all welcome to see, touch and try a variety of technologies while engaging with the depth and breadth of scientific practice on the Sapphire Coast.

  • In Wagga this year’s Riverina Science Festival again features activites presented by the  National Indigenous Science Education Program as well as Robot Zoo, a Citizen Science Biodiversity Blitz and many more hands on events.
  • In Newcastle, all welcome to attend the Hunter Innovation and Science Festival comprising a variety of activities for the whole community. Kicking off with Drones in the Vines on Saturday 11 August, presented by the Cessnock Academy of STEM Excellence in partnership with UAVAIR, the festival continues with a full day of entertainment on offer on Saturday 18 August including a Mini-Electric Vehicle Challenge. This is followed by hands on activities and talks at the University of Newcastle.  Enjoy a fun day of science at Newcastle Museum the next day on Sunday 19 August.
  • Attend SCINEMA international science festival screenings in Cowra and Orange where community members will also show short films that profile collaborations between scientists, environmental agencies and the community through a series of 3-minute vodcasts.
  • Hear about kolas at the Hotel Beatty in East Gresford on Friday 10 August from 6 pm and find out how to get involved in the Koala Count. SCINEMA is on the bill in Dungog at the James Theatre on 11 August from 7pm. This follows an event earlier that day that will bring a panel of experts together from 3-5 pm to explain the how why and what of community-owned renewble energy. Head back to the James Theatre for a special screening of BLUE the Film followed by networking drinks on 12 August.

Sydney Science Festival

Now in its fourth year, Sydney Science Festival runs from 7-19 August and offers 200 events across the city, many of them free!


Meet Sydney’s top researchers in a variety of locations from parks, gardens and libraries to museums, university campuses and some of Sydney’s most prestigious venues, including Sydney Opera House, City Recital Hall, Centennial Park, Australian Museum and Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences.

  • Discover what will happen when our galaxy collides with Andromeda with astrophysicist, author and Stargazing Live TV presenter Lisa Harvey-Smith. When Galaxies Collide is on Friday 10 August from 7 pm at the Powerhouse Museum.
  • Take a look into the future with Good Robot/Bad Robot at Sydney Opera House on Sunday 12 August at 3 pm where artificial intelligence and data ethics expert Ellen Broad will join Sydney-based researcher Prof Toby Walsh and MIT Media Lab technologist Dr Hae Won Park to consider what robots mean not just for human lives, but for the way we understand human intelligence, human values, and humanity itself.
  • Join Prof Muireann Irish who will explain the deep links between music and memory. Sounds Like Science is at City Recital Hall on Wednesday 9 August from 12.30 pm.
  • Hear from the 2018 Australian of the Year Professor, Prof Michelle Simmons at The Einstein Lecture: The Quantum Computing Revolution on Tuesday 14 August at UNSW Sydney.
  • Travel with Prof Geraint Lewis on a journey through space and time, from galactic collisions and hyperactive black holes, on to the death of the last star. The end of time: the future history of the universe is on Thursday 16 August at The University of Sydney.
  • Find out how marine ecology experts like Professor David Booth have found that environmental changes such as warming waters and pollution are causing ocean acidification, coral disease and coral bleaching. UTS Science in Focus: Will Coral Reefs Survive? is on Wednesday 15 August at UTS.
  • Get the latest on cancer research from Professor David Currow, Chief Cancer Officer of NSW and CEO of the Cancer Institute who will explain how research gives people diagnosed with cancer the best possible chance of survival. How Cancer Outcomes Can Continue to Improve is a breakfast presented by the Office of the NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer at NSW Parliament House on Wednesday from 15 August from 7.30am.

Browse the full Sydney Science Festival program.

Get involved

Looking to get involved in National Science Week? It’s not too late to join the celebrations!

Schools are encouraged to download and use the FREE Game Changers and Change Makers resource packed with science lessons focusing on innovation—past, present and future.

Be a citizen scientist with Virtual Reef Diver, this year’s citizen science project that invites people to dive into the Reef through their computer screens to help scientists monitor the Great Barrier Reef.

And if you’re holding a science-related event in August, join the national celebration of science by adding your event details to our online national calendar at where you will also find logos and banners available for download.

About National Science Week

Running from 11 to 19 August, National Science Week 2018 is expected to reach more than a million Australians—with everything from science festivals, music and comedy shows, expert talks, art installations and performances, interactive hands-on displays, open days and online activities.

In 2018, National Science Week celebrates its 21st birthday, with events held throughout Australia—from Corals in the Outback in western Queensland to the Australian Antarctic Festival in the Apple Isle, to future science-based careers in rural WA to The Innovation Games at Sydney Olympic Park.

First held in 1997, National Science Week has become one of Australia’s largest festivals. Last year saw around 1.2 million people participate in more than 2,100 events and activities around the country.

Find an event in your area at