What is The Flame Challenge™?
When Alda was invited to contribute a guest editorial to the journal, Science, he wrote about why we need scientists to communicate clearly and vividly with the public. The Flame Challenge™ was born.
I’d like to try a playful experiment. Would you be willing to have a go at writing your own explanation of what a flame is — one that an 11-year-old would find intelligible, maybe even fun?
Since 2012, this international contest challenges scientists at every level – from graduate students to senior researchers – to communicate familiar yet complex concepts in ways that are understandable to an 11-year-old. Written, graphic and video submissions then make their way to classrooms of fifth- and sixth-graders from all over the globe who review them and decide the winners.
The Flame Challenge™ offers a $1,000 cash prize for winning scientist entries in each of the categories. The winning scientists will also receive a trip to New York City (includes airfare and accommodations for two nights), where they will meet Alan Alda and be honored during a special program at the World Science Festival.
Scientists, teachers, students and families are invited to join us each year as partners in The Flame Challenge™. Please see the navigation at right to learn more about how to get involved.