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Scientific enquiry comes from the pupils’ questions and imagination; they learn how to be scientists as well as learning science. The first Lab_13 opened in 2009, and the programme is developed by Nottingham charity Ignite! Futures and RSA Fellow Rick Hall.

The aims of Lab_13 are to:

  • Encourage young people to take responsibility and decision-making control of their science research space

  • Build their confidence and skills

  • Create a space for young person-led practical experiment and invention

  • Sustain young people's innate curiosity and creativity

Thanks to a series of partnerships and RSA support, Ignite! has grown the network to include Lab_13s in schools for children with autism, and internationally in Ghana (2015) and Finland (2017).

The latest RSA Catalyst Scaling Award will enable Lab_13s to work more closely together via a refreshed web platform and to share their investigations more widely through the Lab_13 Cookbook; a compendium of real science in schools.

Fellows can get involved by:

  • Promoting the concept of curiosity-led investigations in schools

  • Supporting new Lab_13s locally

  • Volunteering as scientists in residence

  • Suggesting new opportunities for Lab_13 International

Project Team

Rick Hall

Rick Hall

Founder Associate at Ignite!, Churchill Fellow 2016