The initiative Science on Stage started in 2000 pursuing the goal to offer science teachers a European platform to exchange ideas. Through the promotion of good practice teaching examples, upcoming skilled worker shortage in European research institutes were to be thwarted.
In the year 2000, the European science-festival “Physics on Stage” was held for the first time. Target group were physics teachers who came together at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva. The event was organised by CERN, ESA and ESO. The European Commission supported the initiative by the 5th Framework Programme (for Research and Technological Development). Over 400 teachers from 22 European countries met to find new ways in physics education.
From 2005 onwards, the initiative was continued under the name of “Science on Stage”. From now on, all natural sciences (STEM) were included. The organisational responsibility laid within the hands of the seven research institutes on EU level that have formed the EIROforum. The European members have been acquired by the National Steering Committees (NSCs).
Science on Stage Germany decided in 2007 to carry on the initiative by its own but along with all 27 member states. The continuation was enabled by the funding of the employers’ association GESAMTMETALL and its initiative think ING.
The first nationally organised Science on Stage Festival took place from 23-26 October 2008 under the patronage of the Representation of the European Commission in Germany at the Urania in Berlin.
In 2011, the Science on Stage Festival took place from 16-19 April in Copenhagen, Denmark. Under the motto “Winning Hearts and Minds”, 250 teachers and educators from 27 countries came together.
Under the motto "Crossing Borders in Science Teaching", 350 teachers from 25 countries came together from 25-28 April 2013. For the first time the Science on Stage festival took place in bilateral cooperation: Science on Stage Poland and Science on Stage Germany hosted the festival in the border cities of Slubice and Frankfurt (Oder).
From 17-20 June 2015 350 teachers came together to present their teaching projects under the motto "Illuminating Science Education". This festival was organised by Science on Stage UK.
The preparations for the Science on Stage festival 2017 in Debrecen (Hungary) are running at full speed. This time the projects will be presented under the motto "Inventing the Future of Science Education".