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Science Gallery

Founded  2008
Location The Naughton Institute, Trinity College, Dublin

Science Gallery is an international group of public science centres, developed from a concept by a group connected to Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. The first Science Gallery was opened in 2008 and housed in the Naughton Institute at Trinity College.


First opened in 2008 at the Naughton Institute, the gallery hosted exhibitions and events to promote science. The Science Gallery was conceived by Prof Mike Coey, one of Ireland’s leading research scientists, as a response to the lack of a forum in Ireland for public engagement with the issues posed by emerging technologies and cutting-edge research. The science gallery’s central remit was to target programmes that engage 15-25 year olds.

At its launch, Michael John Gorman was the gallery’s director and Lynn Scarff was Education and Outreach manager. Scarff subsequently served as director from 2014 to 2018, before moving to assume the directorship of the National Museum of Ireland. 1Ann Mulrooney was then appointed as director in December 2018.  As of October 2021, the gallery had a staff of 16, led by an acting director, Gerard McHugh. 2


In October 2021, TCD announced that years of running on losses made it no longer financially viable to hold on to the non-profit Science Gallery and that it was to cease operations in February. An immediate public outcry from students, academics, scientists and even those not involved in science in the months leading up to this announcement led to talks between TCD and the Government to find ways to help the beloved site back on its feet. As of 30 September 2021, the total deficit accumulated by Science Gallery was €1.65m. These deficits were blamed on “a sharp decline in grants and philanthropic income since 2017”, which was exacerbated by the pandemic’s effect on public in-person events. Talks between TCD provost Linda Doyle, the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science and the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media were reported to have been unsuccessful.3

In October 2022, in conjunction with the launch of the Open House Dublin festival, the Irish Architecture Foundation (IAF) and the Housing Agency opened a ten-week national exhibition called Housing Unlocked at the Science Gallery, Trinity College Dublin.


Selected exhibitions

  • 2013, Counter, Anthony Murphy
  • 2013, What We See, Joanna Hopkins