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Wednesday, June 16 • 9:00am - 11:00am
Africa-EU Astronomy Collaboration: Towards the First IAU-General Assembly on the African Continent in 2024, and Beyond convened by the African Astronomical Society and Office of Astronomy for Development (OAD) - International Astronomical Union (IAU) IAU-

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In the last two decades, astronomy and space science in Africa have developed rapidly, as evidenced through the winning of the bid to host, for the first time in Africa, the International Astronomical Union’s General Assembly (IAU-GA) in 2024. The IAU-GA is the largest international gathering of astronomers, held every three years by the IAU (the 100-year-old IAU is the international astronomical organisation that brings together more than 12 000 active professional astronomers from more than 100 countries worldwide). There are already numerous astronomy infrastructure projects, instruments and training programmes that are of interest to communities in both Africa and the EU, such as those in optical astronomy (SALT, MeerLicht, Oukaïmeden, Entoto, etc); radio astronomy (MeerKAT, SKA, JIVE, DARA, HartRAO, VLBI, etc); and gamma-ray astronomy (HESS and CTA). This special session offers an opportunity for interactions between existing and potential Africa-EU collaborators to stimulate and explore mutually beneficial opportunities that may arise specifically in the lead up towards the IAU-GA in 2024. Discussions around related science and outreach topics could potentially lead to Africa-EU collaborative flagship projects that would contribute to the legacy of the IAU-GA in 2024.
Topics will include
  1. Bringing together African and EU Astronomical communities (networking);
  2. Developing potential Africa-EU flagship projects in science and outreach;
  3. Increasing African contributions to the science agenda of the IAU-GA 2024
  4. Using the IAU-GA as a milestone to strengthen Africa-EU research collaborations through joint research projects, observations, MSc/Ph.D. student joint supervision, joint proposals, etc.
  5. Identifying potential funding channels for activities leading up to and including the 2024 IAU GA;
  6. Establishment of an Africa-EU Working Group for the IAU-GA in 2024

09:00 – 09:05 Opening Remarks (Kevin Govender/Charles Takalana)
09:00 – 09:10 The African Astronomical Society (Jamal Mimouni)
The European Astronomical Society (Inma Dominguez)
09:10 – 09:25 Presentation and updates on the IAU-GA2024 (Vanessa McBride)
09:25 – 09:35 Science Plan and Flagships towards IAU-GA2024 (Bradley Frank)
09:35 – 09:45 Outreach Plan and Flagships towards IAU-GA2024 (Carolina Ödman)
09:45 – 09:55 EU collaborations for astronomy and science developments in Africa (Mirjana Pović)
09:55 – 10:05 Astrophysics and planetary science for development: lessons and perspectives with AFIPS (David Baratoux)

10:05 – 10:15 Development in Africa with Radio Astronomy DARA (Melvin Hoare)
10:15 – 10:45 Panel Discussion
Example Questions to be addressed
  • How do we best address issues of flow of information between the
  • Africa and EU astronomy community?
  • What does Africa EU collaboration look like at present and what would we like to achieve by 2024?
  • What are the Science and Outreach areas of collaboration that could have mutual benefits?
  • What are existing funding instruments for Africa-EU collaboration?
- Jamal Mimouni
- Inma Domingue
- Melvin Hoare
- Vanessa McBride
- Bradley Frank
- Carolina Ödman
- David Baratoux
- Mirjana Pović
10:45 – 11:00 Africa-EU Working Group for the IAU-GA in 2024 (Kevin Govender)

avatar for Jamal Mimouni

Jamal Mimouni

Prof, AfAS
Jamal Mimouni is an Algerian astrophysicist, who received his higher education partly in Algeria (B. Sc. in Theoretical Physics in 1977 from Algiers University) and partly in the States (Ph. D. in Particle Physics in 1985 from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia). He is also... Read More →
avatar for Inma Domínguez

Inma Domínguez

Secretary of the Council, European Astronomical Society
Inma is Professor of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University ofGranada (UGR). She obtained her PhD from the University of Barcelona (1991) and worked at the Istituto di Astrofisica Spaziale (Italy), being a frequent visitor at the INAF-Osservatorio Astronomico d'Abruzzo, the... Read More →
avatar for Kevin Govender

Kevin Govender

Director, IAU Office of Astronomy for Development
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 Charles Mpho Takalana

Charles Mpho Takalana

Head of Secretariat, African Astronomical Society
Charles Mpho Takalana completed his Ph.D. 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 Mirjana Povic

Mirjana Povic

Assistant professor in astrophysics, ESSTI, Ethiopia; IAA-CSIC, Spain; MUST, Uganda
Mirjana Pović (1981, Serbia) is an assistant professor at the Ethiopian Space Science and Technology Institute (ESSTI), an associate researcher at the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía in Spain, and an honorary lecturer at Mbarara University of Science and Technology in Uganda... Read More →
avatar for Melvin Hoare

Melvin Hoare

Professor,, University of Leeds
Melvin Hoare is Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Leeds, UK. After obtaining a PhD in Astrophysics at University College London, he carried out research at the University of Oxford, UK and Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, Germany. Specializing in the study of how massive... Read More →
avatar for Vanessa McBride

Vanessa McBride

Astronomer, Office of Astronomy for Development
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 →
avatar for David Baratoux

David Baratoux

Planetary Scientist, University Félix-Houphouët-Boigny in Côte d'Ivoire
David Baratoux is a planetary scientist affiliated to the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development, and is currently working at the University Félix-Houphouët-Boigny in Côte d'Ivoire. He was involved in space exploration programs of the solar system, and made... Read More →
avatar for Bradley Frank

Bradley Frank

Associate Director for Astronomy Computing, Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy (IDIA)
Dr Bradley Frank is a professional radio astronomer, and is SARAO’s Associate Director for Astronomy Computing at the Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy (IDIA). Brad has an undergrad from Wits and PhD (Astronomy) from UCT. Prior to his appointment at IDIA, Brad had completed... Read More →
avatar for Carolina Ödman

Carolina Ödman

Associate Professor, IDIA, University of the Western Cape
Dr. Ödman is Associate Professor at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa. Trained in physics at EPFL in Switzerland, she holds a PhD in cosmology from Cambridge University, UK. After a Marie Curie postdoctoral research fellowship in Italy, she changed fields to become... Read More →

Wednesday June 16, 2021 9:00am - 11:00am CEST
Virtual Room: Ghana