Executive Committee WG Junior Members
The Working Group (WG) of IAU Junior Members (JMs) focuses on topics that are crucial to early career astronomers across the globe. This includes careers in academia and industry, mobility, psychological and financial security, inclusivity, transparency, geographical, and gender balance. JMs represent the majority of active astronomers worldwide, which not only drive the field forward, but also provide an invaluable influx of skilled workers to all branches of society. The WG of JMs was established at the XXXth IAU GA in Vienna in August 2018.
Junior Members are defined as individuals who have completed a PhD in the field of astronomy no more than five years ago, as of October 1st of the current calendar year, and are pursuing research in astronomy or have an affiliated profession at the time of application. Candidate JMs are proposed to the IAU Executive Committee (EC) by the National Committee for Astronomy (NCA) of their current country of employment. The call for nominations comes out annually on October 1st and the complete applications are submitted by the applicants before December 15th. Next, the application review is passed on to the NCA, which terminates its review by February 15th of the subsequent year. The Membership Committee reviews the applications by March 31st and sends these final applications to the EC for approval. Full application details are made available in the annual calls. In the case of any issues or questions, the applicants may contact their local NCA or the IAU Secretariat. A JM membership is temporary and expires after six years. At the end of this membership, it is possible to be nominated as an Individual Member, if the JM is still active in astronomy research or in an astronomy-related project. JMs that become employed in non-astronomy related industries remain JMs for the entire duration of their six year term and provide a vital link to industry and the job market outside of astronomy.
This definition includes 6 generations of post-PhD researchers and inevitably revitalizes the IAU to ensure that its vision remains connected with present-day junior astronomers. The temporary membership is a pathway towards individual IAU membership for those that will pursue a career in astronomy or will take on affiliated professional duties.
The goals of the EC WG of JMs are to:
a. Build a network of early career researchers locally, nationally, and internationally.
b. Involve JMs in the activities of the IAU, its commissions, and other mechanisms.
c. Enable the early stage career researchers to share their experiences, thoughts, and views about their careers.
d. Identify the issues encountered by early career researchers worldwide (such as, but not limited to: international mobility, collaborative work, all forms of discrimination).
e. Propose measures to resolve the identified issues in order to improve the research environment and working conditions.
f. Organize an international conference exclusively for early career astronomers on a regular timescale and on a rotational continental basis. This conference is a focused effort of the WG to give junior members an opportunity to:
- Exchange experiences from their PhD and post-PhD time.
- Promote their research and/or current work.
- Get acquainted with representatives from industry.
- Learn about entrepreneurship, startups, and how to transcend the research-market boundary.
- Participate in workshops (such as, but not limited to, professional development and acquisition of skills to move up the academic/industrial ladder, work-life balance, psychological and financial security).
- Expand their knowledge on others areas of research, other astronomy-related jobs, and post-astronomy possibilities.
g. Represent the JMs within the framework of the IAU and all its activities.
The Steering Committee of the EC WG of JMs intends to communicate on a regular basis with the JMs and to solicit input from the entire JM community to reflect the up-to-date needs of its members. The members of the Steering Committee are to be selected through the official voting mechanisms of the IAU. The WG EC of JMs aspires to empower all early career astronomers within the framework of the IAU, the academic field of astronomy and on the international job market.
EC Liaisons: Ewine F. van Dishoeck and Junichi Watanabe
35 rue de la Chapelle
Email 1: fkebeasso-ephemeridesorg
Email 2: fatoumatakebegmailcom
Organization website: http://www.asso-ephemerides.org
NCA adherence: France
January 28, 2019