UNESCO runs an online popular science marathon on HIV – December 1, 2020

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Science and Technology against HIV

How is it possible that doctors have not yet conquered one of the world’s best-studied viruses? Will there be an HIV vaccine and if so, when? Why are there still so many myths around the HIV epidemic? How has the HIV epidemic affected various aspects of our lives, such as health, economy, communications and movies? Will the world score a victory over HIV by 2030, and if so, what is the basis of these projections?

Renowned researchers and experts will go live to answer these and many other questions about HIV. On the World AIDS Day on December 1, 2020, the Foundation for Social and Cultural Initiatives and the Russian Ministry of Education and Science, in collaboration with UNESCO IITE and UNAIDS and with support from VKontakte social network, will host a five-hour online marathon featuring popular science talks and discussions about HIV, covering various perspectives on the epidemic, from healthcare to cultural studies.

The online marathon will be held as part of the annual #STOPHIVAIDS nationwide campaign in Russia. The organizers of this popular science marathon entitled “Why haven’t we conquered HIV yet and what have we learned along the way? (for those who missed out on last year’s December 1st)” hope that the event’s new format will not only attract a larger audience of young people but also help them make better sense of the complex but vitally important aspects of the HIV epidemic, including its medical and social dimensions.

“This is the generation that may end AIDS. To achieve this, they will need the knowledge that science has built over the years of fighting the epidemic. This is what the online marathon is about,” say the event organizers.

Partners of the online marathon – five popular science and educational communities on VKontakte – will use their platforms to broadcast live talks by experts exploring HIV from various perspectives and in broader contexts in a manner which is accessible, relatable and engaging for young people.

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The marathon starts at 12.30 (Moscow time) at #STOPHIVAIDS public in Vkontakte. Mr. Valery Falkov, the Minister of higher education and science, and other organizers will address the participants. Then live talks with experts will follow in the publics.

13.00 — 13.50 – track “Biology” at PostNauka with Professor Marina Bobkova, the Gamaleya national centre of epidemiology and microbilogy
“What do we know about human immunodeficiency virus?”

14.00 — 14.50 – track “Journalism and communication” at The Vyshka with Linor Goralik, Stockholm School of Economics, Karl Linnaeus University
“HIV and social public service announcements: from scaring to calming”

15.00 — 15.50 – track “Cultural studies” at ZIL cultural centre with film critic Egor Belikov

16.00 — 16.50 – track “Social studies” at Fokus with historian Ilya Yablokov and Tatyana Murovana, UNESCO IITE
“Why do we believe in conspiracy theories?”

17.00 — 17.50 – track “Epidemiology” at Kurilka Gutenberga with academician Vadim Pokrovsky and Olga Logunova, Higher School of Economics (Moscow)
“Virus VS Human beings: how HIV epidemics has changed the world?”