Prof. Dr. Köller is the Managing Director of Research at the Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education (IPN). This institution is home to six science competitions including the International Biology, Chemistry and Physics Olympiads as well as the IJSO and EUSO. Hence it was only natural that the Federal Ministry commissioned the IPN to organize IJSO2020 in Germany and to appoint the longstanding managing director of IJSO in Germany, PD Dr. Heide Peters, as Chair of IJSO2020.
Olympic Games for the Brain – Enthusiasm for Science
Welcome to the 17th International Junior Science Olympiad (IJSO), which takes place in Frankfurt am Main from December 2nd – 12th! We were proud when the IPN, the Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education in Kiel was asked to host this competition because the international competition of the IJSO fits perfectly to the IPN and its efforts to promote young talents in science. The IPN is one of the leading research institutes in Germany working in the field of teaching and learning science and mathematics. The institute is involved in several long-term research projects as well as international large-scale assessments, including PISA. The IPN’s research goes beyond a subject-specific perspective and investigates general aspects of high-quality teaching using and developing state-of-the-art research methods. As a member of the Leibniz Association, the IPN is affiliated with 95 independent research institutes in Germany. Leibniz institutes focus on highly relevant social, economic and ecological issues.
One of the IPN’s research areas investigates conditions, characteristics, and effects of teaching and learning in mathematics and science. The focus is on the learning processes of children and adolescents as these processes influence competences, interests, and beliefs in science and mathematics. Furthermore, we investigate questions pertaining to the development of teachers’ professional knowledge. The IPN develops new scientific approaches according to didactic and pedagogical principles and examines the effectiveness of these new concepts in school teaching. One focus of the institute’s work is on issues relating to science communication and extracurricular learning, e.g., in museums or student laboratories.
In addition to research, the IPN also conducts many transfer activities closely related to its research. This is the reason why the IPN, supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, organizes the national selection competitions for various (international) student competitions. The IPN has responsibility for the Biology Olympiad, the Chemistry Olympiad, the Physics Olympiad, the European Science Olympiad, the Federal Environment Competition and of course the selection competition for the International Junior Science Olympiad. It is, therefore, a very special honor for the IPN to host the international competition this year. We wish all participants an interesting, inspiring and successful time in Frankfurt!
Prof. Dr. Olaf Köller
IPN Managing Director of Research
since 2004 more than 30 000 German students got involved in the IJSO, many of them persuing academic careers in Natural Sciences by now. Quite a few among them study in countrys all over the world, part of this being due to the IJSO.
We are grateful to the many IJSO host countries who gave our students and mentors the chance to see many places and meet people from around the globe in Africa, America, Asia, and in Europe. They indeed made friends in all parts of the world and still burn for Science.
Now the time has come to thank all of you. We are proud to announce that the 17th International Science Olympiad will be held in Germany. As the Chair of the IJSO 2020, it is my great pleasure to invite you, the IJSO family, to Frankfurt am Main. I can assure that Germany will put all its efforts and skills in setting up a fair competition. We are looking forward to showing you around and sharing with you many exciting, touching, and glamarous moments.
A warm welcome to Frankfurt am Main!
PD Dr. Heide Peters
Chair of IJSO 2020 Germany