Application Procedure for National Membership


Organisations interested in joining the IAU national membership are invited to submit proposals for consideration at the IAU XXXII General Assembly in South Africa in 2024. Submissions are accepted until December 1, 2023.

The IAU welcomes applications for its National Membership for any country that wishes to promote and develop professional astronomy in their community. National Members are organisations representing a national professional astronomical community desiring to actively participate in international frameworks and supporting the mission of the Union of promoting and safeguarding the science of astronomy in all its aspects, including research, communication, education, and development, through international cooperation. 

National Members are paramount in deciding the future of the Union by voting to: 

  • Determine the overall policies, 
  • Approve any changes in the Statutes and, including any changes in Bye-Laws, 
  • Elect the Executive Committee to implement its decisions, 
  • Appoint the Special Nominating Committee to propose the slate of the Executive Committee;
  • Appoint the Financial Committee to review the Executive Committee budget;
  • Appoint the Membership Committee to review and approve Individual Member and Junior Member applications;
  • Approve new National Members;
  • Approve the financial reports, and triennium proposed budgets.

Additionally, National Members can:

  • Nominate Honorary, Individual and Junior Members;
  • Propose to host General Assemblies

Applications for National Members are open every three years and close eight months prior to the IAU General Assemblies.[1]


National Members can be organisations by which scientists of the corresponding nation or territory adhere to the International Science Council (ISC), a National Society or Committee for Astronomy, or an institution of higher learning, and their applications should include[2]:

  • A description of the organisation requesting IAU National Membership, including its role in the astronomical activity of the country.  The basic organisational structure, key personnel and funding sources of the organisation should be explained.
  • An overview of recent and planned professional astronomical activities in the country, including a listing of astronomical institutes and the number of professional astronomers and their astronomical or astronomy-related projects.  
  • The class of IAU National Membership the country seeks and the proposed Category of Adherence (Bye-Laws §VII.25)[2].

The IAU Executive Committee would appreciate knowing of specific benefits to local astronomical activity and development that a prospective National Member hopes to gain from its membership in the Union.

Dues to the Union are paid annually by National Members. These dues are defined by the Category of Adherence of each country, each category corresponding to a defined number of Units of Contribution (Bye-Laws §VII.25). National Members with Interim status pay one-half Unit of Contribution annually. The approved Units of Contribution are EUR (euros) 3285, 3351, and 3418 per year for the years 2022, 2023 and 2024, respectively. Contributions for the period 2024-2027 will be fixed by the IAU XXXII General Assembly.

Submissions are accepted until December 1, 2023. To submit an application, please email the IAU General Secretary (,  with a copy to the IAU Membership Coordinator at ). A suggested application form is linked below[3].

For any queries, please contact the IAU Membership Coordinator at iauinfos@iapfr.   



[1] The procedure for submission and approval of a National Membership application is described in the Working Rules (Working Rules §II.1-2), with important references in the IAU Statutes §IV.5-10, Bye-Laws §I.1-2.

[2] National Members have the right to vote on IAU issues. For budget issues, each NM has a number of votes equal to one greater than the number of its Category; for non-budget matters, each National Member has 1 vote. Categories can range from I to XII (Bye-Laws§VII). Applying National Members may request a discussion with the President to understand the most appropriate category.

National Members with Interim and Observer Status cannot vote (Statutes§VII).

[3] National member candidates can use this form as a guideline for their application. 


Useful Links

  • Browse the IAU Brochure (2023)
  • IAU membership eligibility and application brochure (2023)
  • Download the IAU National Members Guide Application Form (2023
  • National Members List