Forum on Astronomy in Africa and the IAU GA2024

Press Release


The International Astronomical Union (IAU), which has been in existence for over 100 years, is the world’s largest body of professional astronomers. Every three years, it holds a General Assembly (IAU-GA), bringing together astronomers from around the world. Consequently, this meeting will take place for the first time on the African continent in 2024. Cape Town has been selected to host the meeting, and the National Research Foundation (NRF) is the official host organisation.

In preparation for this event, it is essential to bring together the African astronomical community to discuss how the continent can maximally benefit from this unique opportunity. Additionally, there will be discussions on how best to facilitate participation by countries in Africa.

Format: Virtual Forum for the African astronomy community via zoom

Date/Duration: 27 – 29 October 2021 (3 days) 

Purpose: Engage the African Astronomy community, obtain commitment on participation and appoint country ambassadors.

Spirit: The October forum should culminate in a few months of engagements with different stakeholder groups (e.g. astronomers, amateurs, science centres, outreach professionals, etc.) Furthermore, the engagements should start well before the forum, and each stakeholder group should be invited to contribute to the programme.

Who should attend: Astronomers, amateur astronomers, education and outreach community. In addition, the event is open to anyone interested in astronomy research, infrastructures, education, outreach, development; amateur astronomy, astrotourism, astronomy arts & culture, etc. In particular, those interested in proposing an IAU Symposium or Focus meeting at the 2024 GA are encouraged to express their interest here so that they can be assisted with the IAU process.

To register for this event, kindly check here.

About IAU

The IAU’s mission is to promote and safeguard the science of astronomy in all its aspects. This includes research, communication, education and development, through international cooperation. Furthermore, the IAU’s Individual and Junior Members — structured in Divisions, Commissions, and Working Groups — are professional astronomers worldwide, at the PhD level and beyond, active in professional research and education in astronomy. The IAU has 12216 Individual and Junior Members in 106 countries worldwide. Of those countries, 82 are National Members. In addition, the IAU collaborates with various scientific organizations all over the world.

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