29-30 May 2017
European Southern Observatory
Europe/Berlin timezone

Scientists at IRB Barcelona dance for cancer, Alzheimer’s and diabetes research

30 May 2017, 11:05
Telescopium (European Southern Observatory)


European Southern Observatory

85748 Garching Germany


Ms Sarah Sherwood (Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona))


This session will focus on a case study of an innovative social media project launched by the Institute for Research in Biomedicine in Barcelona. IRB Barcelona was founded just over ten years ago and is doing world-class science, but is still relatively unknown. With the hope of raising awareness about our important work into diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer's and diabetes, we embarked on a project to launch a video fundraising and awareness campaign that would highlight our science and, importantly, our scientists—the hidden faces behind the research. We knew we wanted our video to be different, so we chose to dance. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNOqgHTtvH8&feature=youtu.be We launched the campaign on YouTube in October 2014. It immediately went viral and has been seen more than one million viewers in 200 countries. It has received extensive coverage by media in Spain and in other countries, and even appeared on the homepage of Science magazine. The video has been an example of marketing, awareness, fundraising and engagement success. In terms of branding and awareness, there are now more than a million people who are aware that IRB Barcelona exists and know that we do important research into diseases. Thanks to the fundraising mechanisms built in to the video, we raised thousands of euros in donations, and have received countless messages of support from around the world. In terms of engagement, the campaign provided a unique opportunity to bring our staff together for an exciting project with a common goal. We have also successfully engaged the community and prompted other individuals and groups to undertake their own fundraising activities in support of our research.

Primary author

Ms Sarah Sherwood (Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona))

Presentation Materials