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BodyWorks is a practical 'hands-on' exhibition using a combination of interactive exhibits and live-lab experiences to raise awareness of the science underpinning human health & well-being in the 21st century.

Find out how your

BodyWorks RESEARCH CAPSULES Showcasing the big ideas and developments in biomedical science. Developed in collaboration with research groups the content will evolve over time.

INTERACTIVE ZONES Providing a ‘hands on’, ‘minds on’ experience for visitors, supporting active prolonged engagement with the ideas of fundamental biology.

ABOUT YOU LIVE LAB Where the public have the opportunity to engage with vibrant researcherled activities or volunteer to participate in real research experiments.

Visitors become the star participant in their own experiment when they measure their physical and physiological characteristics, compare them with fellow visitors and sports stars and save them to their own personal passport.

"BodyWorks is

an exceptional standard in terms of interpretive learning and presentation.





I’ve just turned 40 so you start thinking about the impact of ageing, so a lot of exhibits are relevant to me. Visitor


Syncardia Total Artificial Heart model; one of many examples showing the development of heart surgery.

Health & Wellbeing in the 21st Century

You are the scientist, you are the experiment. BodyWorks is a £1.89M project funded by the Wellcome Trust (£900,000), GlaxoSmithKline (£600,000) and a variety of smaller trusts and foundations. Delivered on time and to budget Glasgow Science Centre has created an impressive 750m2 space where interactivity, engagement, fundamental biology and personal health & well-being are key to the exhibition design. With over 100 electro-mechanical, audio-visual and IT based exhibits; a Live Lab programme space and a suite of education and public activities this ‘hands-on’ exhibition creates an immediate ‘wow’ factor which is followed up through question led interpretation that encourages all to develop their scientific awareness.

Bringing together research scientists, health professionals and visitors in a unique environment, the exhibition and its associated programmes will run for over six years and aims to reach more than 1.8 million people. Since opening the exhibition in late March 2013 over 143,000 people have visited the exhibition. The exhibition has performed very well, with high approval ratings, and has been described as a ‘truly exceptional exhibition’. Lastly, the ability for GSC to raise funds for future exhibition projects seems more positive. We are in the process of developing an exhibition called Powering the Future and to be able to show firsthand the quality of exhibition that we can deliver and the evidence of our good project management skills is helping to us to secure the funds that we will require to take this project forward. It is early days for this project but it’s looking very promising.



All members of my party really enjoyed our visit, particularly the BodyWorks floor – they didn’t want to leave.





researchers who contributed knowledge, time and resources to the development of the exhibition.


of the visitors surveyed learned something about the human body as a result of BodyWorks.


of the visitors surveyed rated BodyWorks as excellent or good.


visitors indicated they would consider a change in their lifestyle as a result in the BodyWorks experience.

hands-on, minds-on interactive exhibits.

143 000




AVERAGE TIME VISITORS SPEND IN THE EXHIBITION, ‘When we went on day two of opening, we only visited Floor 3 that day. We stayed for 4 hours and that doesn’t include the time spent re-energising over lunch! Loved it!’

VISITORS TO BODYWORKS in the first 5 months of opening.


registered users on the BodyWorks microsite.


of the exhibits were new developments by the Science Centre.


for "...thanks involving me. Feedback from academic contributor


key platform BECOMING A


Our Inspire & Challenge courses' supports the research community to develop the skills to deliver high quality science engagement experiences with the wider community.

for science engagement

Throughout the development of BodyWorks over 200 individuals and organisations contributed their time and resources to make the exhibition exciting, relevant and accurate. These experts contributed: time for content verification, ideas, resources, contacts and boundless enthusiasm for the project. BodyWorks is an excellent example of co-creation leading to the production of a high quality, appealing, and interactive content-rich exhibition.

DEVELOPING EXHIBITS The development of the exhibition resulted in over 40 exhibits that are directly related to current research & technologies.

The willingness of these experts to continue to work with us, developing and delivering programmes and refreshing the content is evidence of the success of the partnerships developed. These collaborations expanded the contacts network and available skills allowing us to maximise the quantity and quality of the outputs. The importance of the connections that we have made with the academic and industrial community cannot be understated. The delivery of a high quality experience that receives such positive feedback has helped GSC to build credibility with these groups and for them to now think of GSC as a key partner for public engagement activity. The level of contact with the local universities has certainly increased over the last period and as they are becoming more strategic about their activity they are increasingly inviting GSC to be a key partner from the outset of their planning.

MEET THE EXPERT Since opening over 60 days of researcher led programmes have been delivered reaching an audience of over 25,000 people.

STUDENTS 15 students undertook research and evaluation projects in support of their own degrees.The output of their work was invaluable to the project team and without this resource we would have struggled to deliver the exhibition to the quality standards we aspired to.

Your Bionic Body

Mend Your Broken Heart

From prosthetic limbs to motion capture technology, replacing and understanding body parts is no longer science fiction. How are engineers pushing the boundaries to mimic nature itself?

Damage to this vital organ can be deadly. Now doctors, armed with the latest technology and techniques, can repair and even replace a broken heart.

sense science MAKING OF

Getting Under Your Skin From dissections to imaging, transplants to research, human bodies have the potential to help others. How are scientists unlocking this life-saving potential?

The first wave of Research Capsules launched with the exhibition has been well received by visitors. The next stage is to develop further collaborations with research groups and industry partners to take maximum advantage of this unique asset to engage the public in current research.

Making Sense of Your Brain It is the most complex thing in your body - and possibly the universe. Now scientists, armed with the latest imaging technologies, are revealing the wonders – and problems lying deep within the brain.

Your Body Fights Back Parasitic invaders avoiding detection, overreactions to pollen and dust, the body even attacking itself – your immune system is at war. What are scientists doing to help?



DNA Decider


How High Can You Jump?

Sam likes competition & endurance so he loves the running track & how high can you jump. My other son Alec loves puzzles & interactive games so he loves the IT games and the stations where you take your time.


Favourite Exhibits The exhibition has a wide range of different styles of exhibit with each type offering very different ways to engage and access visitors learning styles.

Mindball "BodyWorks is full of stuff about your body & mind."

Research Capsules

About You

Adults consistently picked out the Research Capsules as examples of exhibits where they fel they had learnt referring (examples included, how stents work, heart transplants, 3D Brain scans).

The ‘About You’ and its accompanying tagging system offers 11 opportunities for visitors to be guinea pigs in their own experiments.

Sprint Track

13,300 people have run down our track clocking an average speed of 9kph.

Multitasking Brain

Keyhole Surgery

Out the 12,000 visitors men and women are equal in their abilities to multitask.

High dwell times of visitors on individual exhibits of up to 10-15 minutes is being observed.

How unique are you?

In 5 months this exhibit has had 12,424 users of which 817 are completely unique nobody is like them!

3D Brain Scan

Virtual Autopsy "absolutely outstanding exhibit...very cutting edge (no pun intended)."

“fascinating to see the brain in 3D in such precision.” Retired eye surgeon

Smokers Body

“I used to smoke seven months ago the smokers lungs reinforce my conviction not to smoke.”

Fat & Thin Slices

“I am going to adopt a healthy eating habit after you see the effect of obesity on internal organs.”

Pin Wall An opportunity to express yourself - consistently the most exhibit highest in the combination of most use and time spent on it.

Memory Challenge Raising awareness of alzheimer's this exhibit rates in the top 5 exhibits for visitor dwell time.


"You can play,

have fun and find out all about the body.


Primary School Teacher



Accessible "great interactive

exhibits and very informative.


Secondary School Teacher

TO ALL Our Schools and Community Engagement Programmes have been designed to meet the needs of learners. Over 38,000 school pupils and 70 community groups have visited BodyWorks since it openend.

Glasgow Science Centre would like to thank everyone who made BodyWorks a reality especially the support of Garfield Weston Foundation • The Robertson Trust Scottish Enterprise • Bellahouston Bequest Fund Commonweal Fund • W M Mann Foundation Endrick Trust • James Wood Bequest Fund Brett Family Trust • The Physiological Society AMW Trust• Medical Research Council

Thanks Arka Design Studio • Kurt Hüttinger GmbH & Co. KG • Elmwood • Pixel Stag • AbioMed • Amalgam Model Makers • Andy Buchanan Photography Asthma UK • Baby Scanning Ltd • BBC Learning • BD Print • Ben Gammon • Berlin Heart Group • Blacklight • British Heart Foundation Brown University, USA • Cancer Research UK • ChangeMyFace • Channel 4 • Chas. A. Blatchford & Sons Ltd • Clement Consulting Ltd Collective Architecture • Company of Biologists • Diabetes UK Scotland • Digital Learning Foundation • Dignity Health • DRM Engineering East Kilbride Pirates • Eastern • Edward Ross Illustrator • eMouseAtlas • Flemings Innovative Plastics Ltd • Forward Five • Generation Scotland Glasgow Caledonian University • Glasgow Rocks • Graham Rose Design • Heather Docherty Design • Her Majesty’s Inspector of Anatomy for Scotland Human Developmental Biology Resource • Intuitive Surgical • John Wiley & Sons, Inc. • Johnny Two Shoes • Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine Laing O’Rourke • MAKlab • Mayo Clinic Medical Research Council Merck & Co., Inc. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute • National Institute of Health National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society • NHS Scotland • Novo Nordisk Ltd • One Space Creative • Össur UK • Queen’s University, Canada Rancon • Rathlin Medical • Roslin Institute • Royal Hospital for Sick Children (Yorkhill) SAE Institute • Sandyford Initiative • Savalas Scottish Parasite Diagnostic Reference Laboratory • Scottish Stem Cell Network • SINAPSE • Smithsonian Institution • Southern General Hospital Sport Scotland Stockline Plastics • Striking Iron • SynCardia Systems Inc. • The Carter Centre • The Interactive Institute • The Quickening Thoratec Corporation • Touch Bionics • Twig World • University College London University of Aberdeen • University of Arizona University of Central Lancashire • University of Dundee • University of Edinburgh • University of Glasgow • University of Sheffield University of Stirling • University of Strathclyde • University of Texas University of the West of Scotland • Vascutek Ltd • W19 Exhibition Design West of Scotland Institute of Biomedical Sciences • Winning Moves Prof. Alan Jardine • Alan Kidd • Dr Alessandra Stangherlin • Alex Galdkov • Alison Culpan • Dr Alison Murray • Dr Allan Pacey • Prof. Allister Ferguson Dr Andrew Murphy • Dr Andrew Murray • Dr Andy Winters • Angie Malone • Anna Zoccarato • Dr Arup Mallik • Prof. Ben Jones • Ben Stewart Benly Thomas • Prof. Bernie Conway • Prof. Bill Cushley • Bridie Cowan • Dr Bruce Carse • Camilla Perselli • Prof. Carol Tannahill • Caroline Davie Carolyn Yates • Cathy MacDonald • Dr Charlie Frowd • Charlotte Bailey • Chigako Uwabe • Chris Armit • Dr Chris Cretekos • Chris Patterson • Dr Christine Knight Claire Ronald • Prof. Colin Berry • Connie Jaffrey • Craig McNally • Dr Craig Robertson • Darcey Black • Darci Hart-McKittrick • Prof. Dave Wyper David Blatchford • Prof. David Maxwell • Dr David Millan • Debbie Martin-Consani • Deborah Smith (baby Heather) • Diane Laughtland (baby Blair) Donna Robertson • Emma Ross (baby Hali) • Emma Baird • Emma Nuttall • Esther Smith • Fiona Bellot (baby Mathieu) • Fiona Reynolds • Prof. Gerry Graham Gillian Pearson • Gordie Adam • Gordon Sommerville • Graeme Boyle • Dr Graham Durant • Grant Slinn • Grant Spence • Hannah Ferguson • Hayley McGeoch Dr Heather Reid • Helen Paterson • Iain Dick • Prof. Ian J Deary • Prof. Ian R Whittle • Prof. Ian Underwood • Prof. Inke Nathke • Dr James Going • Jamie Graham Jennifer Halsall • Jessica McBride • Jillie Cooper • Prof. Jim Hough • Dr Jo Mountford • Prof. Joanna M Wardlaw • Joanne Jamieson • Prof. John Coggins Prof. John Thorburn • Jude Fleming • Judy Jarvie (baby Freya) • Juila Hector • Kareena Marshall • Karen Haxton (baby Juliette) • Dr Karin Oien • Katie Pinnock Katy Winton • Keith Cook • Prof. Keith Muir • Kelly Donaghy • Ken Findlay • Dr Kenneth Robertson • Dr Kevin O'Dell • Dr Kevin Pollock • Prof. Kevin Warwick Dr Kim Dale • Dr Kirsten Forbes • Kirsty Gilmour • Kohei Shiota • Kyla McCallum • Laura Dowie • Laura Hoy • Laura Scott • Lauren McPherson • Leigh Viola Liam Moynihan • Lindsay Hogg • Dr Lisa DeBruine • Lorraine Stone • Lucy Ellis • Lucy Jones • Lynn Bruce (baby Neil) • Lynsey Rule • Magda Stasiulewicz Dr Maria del C. Valdés Hernández • Dr Marie-Hélène Grosbras • Dr Marios Stavridis • Dr Mark E Bastin • Martin Mathers • Mary Anderson • Max-Aquilera-Hellweg Dr Megan Davey • Michel Le Conte • Prof. Mike Turner • Monica Porciani • Morna Fisken • Natasha Boyle • Dr Naveed Sattar • Neal Millar • Dr Nicola Veitch Dr Owain Millington • Prof. Paul Hagan • Dr Paul M Rea • Paul Meikle • Prof. Peter Hancock • Prof. Philip Rowe • Dr Rachel Smith • Rachel Walker Dr Richard Behringer • Dr Rob Jones • Robert Beveridge • Prof. Robert H Logie • Robert McCallum • Robin Bartlett • Rod Ferrier • Dr Ron Baxendale Ron Rodger • Ross Hannah • Ross McFarlane • Sarah Ward • Sarah Wright • Sharyn Murray • Shigehito Yamada • Shona Thomas (baby Michael) • Dr Shona Hilton Prof. Siddharthan Chandran • Sterling Davis • Dr Steve Kelly • Prof. Sue Black • Susan Hewitson • Dr Tanita Casci • Prof. Terry Gourlay • Dr Thomas H Bak Tom Arnstein • Dr Tom Zeissen • Victoria Clow • Vincent Hantam • Vivienne Smith • William Marshall And of course the invaluable contributions of Team GSC


Charity Glasgow Science Centre is a charity whose mission is to inspire, challenge and engage everyone with the wonders of science. Glasgow Science Centre 50 Pacific Quay, Glasgow G51 1EA 0141 420 5000

BodyWorks review  

A compilation of design work and stories from the creation of BodyWorks the exhibition

BodyWorks review  

A compilation of design work and stories from the creation of BodyWorks the exhibition