ann20031 — Announcement

Banner for the 2nd Shaw–IAU Workshop on Astronomy for Education
17 September 2020
2nd Shaw–IAU Workshop on Astronomy for Education

The 2nd Shaw–IAU Workshop on Astronomy for Education will be held online on 6–9 October 2020. The event has been organised by the IAU Office of Astronomy for Education (OAE) with generous funding from the Shaw Prize Foundation, and will be held as a fully virtual event. 

Earlier this year, the OAE began building its network of National Astronomy Education Coordinators (NAECs), representatives in various countries who serve as the liaison between their countries’ astronomy education communities and the OAE. The main aim of the 2nd Shaw–IAU Workshop is to consolidate that network, encourage the NAECs to make personal contact with each other and with key representatives of the IAU astronomy education community, and more generally learn about the international structures and projects that will feature prominently in the work of the OAE and the NAEC teams.

Meeting topics also include common challenges faced by astronomy educators around the world, as well as a global overview of astronomy education at primary and secondary level. The meeting will also be an opportunity to build collaborations, with individual, virtual face-to-face meetings between participants an integral part of the programme.

The opening event of the workshop will double as the formal opening of the Office of Astronomy for Education, and will feature addresses by IAU President Ewine van Dishoeck, IAU General Secretary Teresa Lago, and representatives from the foundations that fund the OAE: Theresia Bauer, MdL, Chair of the Carl Zeiss Foundation Administration; and Minister for Science, Research and Art of the State of Baden-Württemberg; Beate Spiegel, Managing Director of the Klaus Tschira Foundation; and Kenneth Young, Chairman of the Shaw Prize Council and Vice Chair of its Board of Adjudicators, from the Shaw Prize Foundation.

The opening event will feature a keynote talk by Svein Sjøberg, Professor in Science Education, Department of Teacher Education and School Research, University of Oslo, Norway. Sjøberg is responsible for the groundbreaking ROSE study of pupils’ interest in various subject areas of science for forty different countries. He will talk on the subject of Astronomy and Space Science: On top of Children's interest. Selected results from the ROSE-project.

In line with this year’s Shaw–IAU Workshop’s theme, most participants have already been invited personally — not only the 256 current NAECs, but also key individuals involved in international-level astronomy or science communication projects. If you are active internationally in astronomy education, and would like to participate, please contact us directly at It should be stressed that this is not a training event for teachers, educators or practitioners — although we hope to start offering that type of event soon!

More information

The IAU is the international astronomical organisation that brings together more than 14 000 professional astronomers from more than 100 countries worldwide. Its mission is to promote and safeguard astronomy in all its aspects, including research, communication, education and development, through international cooperation. The IAU also serves as the internationally recognised authority for assigning designations to celestial bodies and the surface features on them. Founded in 1919, the IAU is the world's largest professional body for astronomers.



Niall Deacon
Coordinator: IAU Office of Astronomy for Education

Lars Lindberg Christensen
IAU Press Officer
Cell: +49 173 38 72 621

About the Announcement



Banner for the 2nd Shaw–IAU Workshop on Astronomy for Education