China Cultural Visiting Hub
University of Nottingham
Informal learning & science education

Informal learning and science education

ILSE is the study of the information transition system in the field of science popularization. It further explores new concepts of exhibition design through means of architectural design and spatial narrative.


The informal learning and science education (ILSE) theme intends to explore innovative and creative ways to deliver scientific knowledge to the public more efficiently and more interactively.

Based on the strength of architectural design in the Department of Architecture and Built Environment, we aim to create exciting science popularization products by international collaborations with professional curators and educators within museums and science centres.

Our potential outcomes include exhibitions, events, buildings, and multi-media content.

Case studies

  • Regeneration of BaShan Reservoir Geological Park: Funded by Bashan Reservoir Administration, Yishui, China, RMB 200,000. The project was completed by June 2014 and six high quality design schemes have been produced for the clients.
  • Revitalisation of Beijing Zoo Area:  a new Science Quarter of Beijing – funded by Beijing Xicheng District Government, China, RMB 200,000. The project has been completed by Jan. 2015 and six high quality schemes have been produced. Presentation to the client will be held in Apr. 2015 and relative publication and public exhibition will be followed up afterwards.
  • Portable Science Camp Design: funded by Beijing Weichuang Bozhi Science Education. Co. Ltd, RMB 50,000. The project is currently in design process and will be completed by Jun. 2015. 
  • Great Panda Science Park: funded by Bureau of Tourism, Sichuan Province, China, RMB 200,000. This project will be run from Sep. 2015 to Jan. 2016.
  • Joint funding application with National Science Library, China for the project of Exhibition Design of Annual Show: Top Scientific Discoveries of CAS, 2015-2016. This application will be submitted in Oct. 2015 and funding supplier is Bureau of Science Communication, Chinese Academy of Science.
  • Design consultant for the project of Interactive Exhibition Platform Design of Precise Agriculture Industry: this project is a collaboration with National Science Library, China and outcomes will be delivered by Dec. 2015.
  • General design consultant for the project of Chinese Paleontological Cultural Industry via Video/Films and other Associated Products: the Paleozoological Museum of China is currently applying for large funding from Ministry of Finance of China under the national strategic project of culture industry, which is aimed to develop a multi-media platform for paleontological science popularisation through cartoons, Sci-fi film, books, toys and games, etc. Wang Qi is joining the project as consultant in the team of creation and design.
  • Museum Studies Symposium: Space + Museum: this symposium focused on the contemporary exhibition design and spatial narrative within natural history museums. Held on 18 May 2015 this event was co-organised by Architectural Humanities Research Group and CVCH. Key speakers included Fiona Cole-Hamilton from the Natural History Museum, Chris Jarvis from Oxford University Museum of Natural History, and Dr. Adam Smith from Nottingham Natural History Museum, Wollaton Hall.
  • Dinosaur Festival: with intention of promoting public understanding of Darwin’s Theory of Evolution through new exhibition design. The CCVH is currently working to bring a new Dinosaur Festival – Feathers, to Nottingham Natural History Museum, Wollaton Hall.


Continuing professional development

Working with other personnel from CCVH, ILSE provides a design-based workshop for CPD programmes of curatorial training. The content allows participants to understand and reinterpret existing gallery space through the perspective of architectural narrative, and finally translate it into pioneering exhibition design schemes.


Contact us



Asia Business Centre

Business Engagement and Innovation Services
The Sir Colin Campbell Building
Triumph Road,
Nottingham NG7 2TU