Current project – Curiosity Evaluation

Clients: BBC Children in Need and Wellcome

Start date: July 2019

Expected end date: October 2022


The Curiosity funding scheme is a joint programme developed by Wellcome and BBC Children in Need. It aims to enhance the opportunities for disadvantaged children and young people to engage with and enjoy informal science activities to improve their personal and social development. The programme funds projects at the intersection of the youth work and informal science learning sectors.

The main emphasis of the programme and its evaluation is identifying whether there is a ‘distinctiveness of science’ that contributes or not to improving children’s lives, and how this is influenced by informal science activities being enacted in a youth work setting.

Our Approach

Working in partnership with research company Substance we are evaluating the Curiosity funding programme, employing a mixed methods approach to understand differences that informal science activities can make to the lives of children and young people, and what aspects of project delivery enable these changes.

We are particularly interested in whether delivering informal science activities in a youth work setting can contribute to particular impacts on the lives of disadvantaged children and young people, and whether there is a distinctive contribution from informal science in achieving youth development outcomes.

We are working closely with the funded projects and their participants to ensure the presence of the youth voice, as well as those at the front line of youth work and informal science learning.

Expected outputs

Outputs include a Theory of Change model, impact framework, creation of evaluation tools, literature review, formal reporting, and case studies.