The first experimental competition will be held from 4 to 9 August 2019 in the real conditions of the Brestnitsa Karst Geosystem, North Bulgaria. It is intended for students aged 16 to 19 with preferences for different subjects/scientific fields, but teamed with a lasting interest in karst. The professional interest in karst also unites the teams of teachers and consultants/mentors who prepare the students.The rules and content of the competition are primarily consistent with the systemic nature of karst, which allows:
- To offer a new and different form to existing international competitions and student Olympiads;
- To work in teams with students with skills and preferences to different scientific fields but with a lasting interest in karst and emotionally motivated to work in an attractive environment. The members of the team jointly use the acquired knowledge on the different subjects, they understand the connections between the learned knowledge and try to apply it to solving a practical case in the real conditions of unknown karst territory;
- To include application of research methods in solving specific tasks in natural field conditions;
- To motivate teachers in different subjects and with different professional specialization to work and experiment variants for cross-subject links through karst. Their effectiveness is subject to verification and assessment in a competitive environment when solving specific practical tasks in an unfamiliar karst territory.
The competition differs from the international Olympiads by the elements of training that are set in its implementation i.e. participation in field studies with demonstration of field measurements and testing with professional equipment, the data of which will be provided for solving a practical case in the final round of the competition.
The developed Competition regulation enables team members, in addition to knowledge and skills, to show additional individual abilities (artistic, sports, ICT) provoked by the attractive karst environment. In addition to the teamwork, the individual performance of the participants will be evaluated. The preparation for the competition stimulates the all-round development and enrichment of the young person as well as his/her physical endurance and psychological sustainability, will, purpose, spatial orientation, technical skills, etc.
The organization and realization of the Competition is coordinated by the Experimental Laboratory of Karstology at NIGGG-BAS and for this purpose an Organizing Committee has been established with relevant committees.
The Organizing Committee (with international participation) elects a Commission (with international participation) and approves the tests and tasks of the Competition; approves the Jury of the Competition and the rules on which the participants are assessed and ranked.The organization and running of the competition is supported by two more Comissions, namely,
- Safety Commission of the field events held during the competition;
- Technical Commission - for supporting and logistic activities, incl. with the participation of volunteers.
- Jury of the Competition (international one) - evaluates the team work in the Competition and determines their final ranking;
- Specialized Jury (international one) of the additional Competition events - evaluates and ranks the individual performance of the participants, selected by the teams;
Questors provide order while checking the theoretical knowledge of the participants and to soling the field tasks.
According to the competition regulation, each participating team consists of 5 students. The team is prepared by a teacher’s team (1 of the teachers is the team leader) and by mentor (s). If there are more than one mentor, they should appoint a spokesman. The teachers and the mentors will participate in the Competition Jury.
The competition will be helped by pre-selected and trained volunteers for: providing technical assistance; securing the karst routes and objects; organizing demonstration and sporting events in karst terrain, incl. in caves.