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Dr. Goéry Delacôte

Dr. Goéry Delacôte

Executive Director, 1991–2005

Renowned French scientist, science educator, and public servant Goéry Delacôte served as the Exploratorium’s Executive Director from 1991 until 2005. Dr. Delacôte holds a Ph.D. in solid-state physics from the École Normale Supérieure in Paris. He has been involved in science and science education since the outset of his career. Before coming to the Exploratorium, Dr. Delacôte was Director of the Science and Technology Information Division of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) in Paris, France. There, he was responsible for the creation, design, and implementation of the INIST Group, the national research library of France. In 1979, Dr. Delacôte assembled a scientific team to create La Villette, a national science and technology museum that opened in Paris in 1986. From 1985 to 1991, he served as Chair of the Board of Directors and of the Scientific Council of the French National Institute of Pedagogical Research (INRP). Dr. Delacôte is the author of Savoir Apprendre (Knowing How to Learn), published in French, which focuses on education reform in France and the United States. The book shares its title with a French nonprofit organization founded in 1997 by Dr. Delacôte with the object of creating a mini-Exploratorium in France, called the Exploradome. During his tenure as Executive Director of the Exploratorium, Dr. Delacôte worked toward extending the reach of the museum through networking—increasing outreach, expanding teacher professional-development programs, creating an expanded Web presence, and supporting the formation of museum partnerships in the U.S. and abroad. In addition to expanding the museum’s facilities at the nearby Presidio National Park, he concentrated efforts on the redevelopment of major exhibition areas, guiding the activity of the museum into new areas of interest, including the important domains of research in life sciences and cognition. As part of creating a “networked” Exploratorium, Dr. Delacôte focused not only on bringing the Exploratorium to the world, but also on bringing the world to the Exploratorium. In the words of Dr. Delacôte, “The very essence of an informal science center is the daily challenge of making the fundamentals of science as accessible to as many people as possible.”