South African Astronomical Observatory Selected as Host for the IAU Office for Astronomy Development
Publiée le 2010-05-26
The past few years have been very active in terms of astronomy education and outreach with the International Year of Astronomy and numerous associated activities all over the world. During this time the
International Astronomical Union (IAU) developed and approved a 10 year
plan for the global development of astronomy.
This plan, entitled "Astronomy for the Developing World" would be realised, amongst other things, through the establishment of an Office for Astronomy Development. Towards the end of 2009 a call went out for potential hosts.
Early in 2010 South Africa was amongst 20 proposals from all over the world which reached the IAU. Today the big news of the selected host was announced - the IAU's International Office for Astronomy Development will be coming to Africa!! The office will be hosted at the headquarters of the South African Astronomical Observatory in Cape Town, a research facility of the National Research Foundation, and the Director will be selected from applicants from across the world.
The fact that this office is coming to Africa has great implications for
the development of astronomy across the continent. In the spirit of the
IAU's strategic plan this consequently has implications for the
development of the continent in general! South Africa has always played
a significant role amongst the developing world and is now being given
the opportunity to host this prestigious office which has the potential
to impact positively on all developing nations, in Africa and beyond.