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ISC and its partners organised the 9th edition of the Science Summit around the 78th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA78) on 12-29 September 2023.
The role and contribution of science to attaining the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will be the central theme of the Summit. The objective is to develop and launch science collaborations to demonstrate global science mechanisms and activities to support the attainment of the UN SDGs, Agenda 2030 and Local2030. The meeting will also prepare input for the United Nations Summit of the Future, which will take place during UNGA79 beginning on 12 September 2024.
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Thursday, September 28 • 9:00am - 11:00am
[VIRTUAL] Astronomy in Africa leading to the IAU-GA2024 and beyond (280901)

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This session will focus on the upcoming International Astronomical Union (IAU) General Assembly (GA) to be held in Cape Town, South Africa, in August 2024. The IAU-GA is arguably the largest and most important astronomy conference, and it will be the first time that it has been held in Africa. The session will also highlight the activities of the African Astronomical Society (AfAS), a Pan-African professional society of astronomers. It will discuss the society's vision, mission, and key objectives. It will also highlight AfAS's progress in contributing to science, outreach, communication, and education activities emanating from astronomy in Africa. The activities leading up to the General Assembly are driven by a vision that significantly uses the event and astronomy to impact society. In this context, the session will also touch on the work of the IAU Office of Astronomy for Development, which is hosted in South Africa and coordinates 11 regional offices globally. The Office has supported over 200 projects reaching over 100 countries, with funding exceeding a million euros.
The session will be presented by a panel of experts from the IAU-GA2024 National Organising Committee and the AfAS Secretariat. They will discuss the following topics:
  • The significance of the IAU-GA2024 for Africa and the world
  • The progress made by AfAS in contributing to science, outreach, communication, and education activities emanating from Astronomy in Africa
  • Opportunities in Astronomy in Africa
  • The work of the IAU Office of Astronomy for Development.
  • Awareness of the importance of astronomy for development.
Exploring opportunities for collaboration and support for astronomy in

avatar for declan kirrane

declan kirrane

Chairman, Science Summit UNGA78
Declan Kirrane is the Founder and Managing Director of ISC Intelligence in Science, the chairman and managing director of the science Summit at the United Nations General assembly, and co-founder of Medicines for Future (MAF). He has over 25 years of experience as a global senior... Read More →

avatar for Charles Takalana

Charles Takalana

Head of Secretariat (AfAS) & Co-Chair: IAU-GA2024 National Organising Committee, African Astronomical Society (AfAS) & IAU-GA2024 NOC
Charles Mpho Takalana completed his PhD in physics, focusing on Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) in December 2020. He completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Johannesburg in South Africa. Charles currently works at the African... Read More →
avatar for Kevin Govender

Kevin Govender

Director, Chair IAU-GA2024 NOC
Founding and current director of IAU Office of Astronomy for Development (OAD), which was established in 2011, now with 11 regional offices and language centres globally. Previously Manager of the Southern African Large Telescope’s Collateral Benefits Programme at the South African... Read More →
avatar for Vanessa McBride

Vanessa McBride

Astronomer, Deputy Director – IAU-OAD
Dr Vanessa McBride is an astronomer at the Office of Astronomy for Development, where she works towards bridging the gap between the community of professional astronomers and the development work.  She is co-chair of the National Organising Committee of the IAU’s General Assembly... Read More →

Thursday September 28, 2023 9:00am - 11:00am EDT