To the youth of Europe,

We have heard your anger. We have seen your dedication and your actions in favor of the climate. Here, in Freiburg im Breisgau (Germany), our youth goes out into the streets on Fridays as well!

However, protests are just the beginning. There are numerous innovative, scientific solutions to fight climate change. It is our responsibility to find, understand them and spread the word! We have got to share our ideas and our knowledge because they represent the key to our success in this challenge concerning all of us! It is time to act! Ailleurs Ici Partout... All over the world and in numerous languages.

Let’s get together in our schools, so we can get the school community, the citizens and the politicians to listen.

For several years now, we at the Franco-German School in Freiburg have been developing an interesting concept in order to spread scientific ideas. Students lead us in an entertaining and scientific evening known as “DupleX”.

The idea of this event is based on “Science Slams” hosted at German universities where different talks about scientific topics or ideas are given in under ten minutes. As we know from “Poetry Slams” the audience then decides which presentation they consider the best.

The French expression “LA SOIRÉE DUPLEX” is an anagram for “RELIA DEUX PÔLES”, which translated in English as: “connecting two poles”.

There are:

  • two kinds of candidates: students (from schools or universities) and scientists. The presentation is done alone or in pairs.

  • two main aims: Science and presentation skills. The talks should be scientific, interesting, interactive and humorous.

  • two types of evaluation: a total of 100 points can be awarded. The scientific judges can give a maximum of 50, the other 50 is given by the audience. The vote by the audience is considered a key element in order to create an interactive and successful evening.

  • two languages: in our trans-border area, most people are German, French or Swiss. The talks alternate between two languages: German/French, English/French or German/ English.

As part of Freiburg’s anniversary in 2020, there will be a common topic for all candidates of the “DupleX” evening: City and Science – How can we improve our quality of life?

Currently two thirds of the European population live in urban areas, which creates numerous challenges: energy management, mobility, energy efficiency in buildings, recycling, public health, architecture, biodiversity, street lighting, air/water/soil quality, consumption etc.

Of course at this point, the scientific approach is no longer sufficient alone. We are now looking for a more holistic approach to improve our quality of life in the city.

What about you? What could the next topic of your school “DupleX” be? The organization gets a lot easier when you mobilize everyone: parents, nearby schools, creating posters in class, interdisciplinary work etc.

It is no longer enough to simply chat about this in small groups. It is no longer enough to make decisions on our own, and to give up on our own. If we want a change for the better, we need to act now. We need to reach out to all the citizens. We need to make sure we are being heard. We need to exchange ideas because we can only reach our goal together! Let‘s not let the fire burn out!

As French poet Paul Eluard wrote:

Je parle de la liberté

Qui finira par nous convaincre

Nul n'aura peur du lendemain

L'espoir ne fait pas de poussière

Rien ne sera jamais en vain ...

"I am talking about freedom.

Who is going to persuade us in the end?

Nobody will fear tomorrow.

Hope does not create dust.

Nothing is in vain..."

Let’s take matters into our own hands!

Let’s act together!

Now!

The students: Elena Baruc-Westhäuser, Julia Bednarz, Kadidja Filiz Saruhanoglu, Lara Press-Lohrmann, Lilly Fischer, Nicolas Schmeding, Silas Schneider, Yves Scheuring & Casper Haak

The teacher: Guillaume Chevallier