We are pleased to announce that the Nepal Astronomical Society (NASO) received the honor of hosting the first Node of the IAU Office of Astronomy for Education network. The OAE Node Nepal joins the OAE Center Italy and the OAE Center Cyprus in a growing network of larger OAE Centers and smaller OAE Nodes. The OAE Node Nepal is a collaboration between the International Astronomical Union (IAU), the Office of Astronomy for Education (OAE), and the Nepal Astronomical Society (NASO). As a host of the OAE Node Nepal, NASO will closely work with IAU for an exciting future of fruitful collaborations.
We expect to have the opportunity to offer and learn from our national, regional and international partners, playing a leading role in educational engagement. It will focus on citizen-science projects in low-tech environments, teacher training programs and training for astronomy Olympiads whilst working to build the OAE’s network of collaborations particularly in the SAARC region and, more generally, with countries facing similar challenges around the globe.
Teresa Lago, IAU General Secretary, says, “I am very pleased to see the rapid growth of the network of OAE Centers and Nodes. This is a confirmation, not only of the real need for the OAE as a fundamental pillar for the IAU to achieve its strategic goals, but also of the worldwide recognition of the relevance of the OAE’s activities and the willingness to be involved in them as a closer partner”.
Markus Pössel, the OAE Director, says: “Supporting astronomy education world-wide is a massive endeavor, and requires a team of strong partners. We are happy to welcome our colleagues from Nepal to that team- it is great that the Nepal Astronomical Society have taken the step to dedicate significant resources to our common goal!”
The Nepal Astronomical Society (NASO) is a not-for-profit organization in Nepal. Its main aim is to create a strong scientific community within the country. It provides a common platform for all astronomy/astrophysics/space science enthusiasts. It promotes science & technology via its outreach, education and research activities on astronomy and space science. It is also hosting IAU NOC Nepal Committee and IAU NAEC Nepal Teams and World Space Week Nepal Committee respectively.
Founded by the IAU in December 2019, the OAE is hosted by the Haus der Astronomie (HdA) and the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy located in Heidelberg, Germany, with a mission to promote and support the development and improvement of astronomy education and related sciences all over the world. In pursuit of its mission, the OAE is building a network of collaborators and partners. In particular, this includes a network of National Astronomy Education Coordinators, who volunteer to act as liaison between the OAE and specific countries, and a network of OAE Centers and OAE Nodes: “branch offices” funded by suitable host organizations that have an interest in furthering astronomy education. HdA’s hosting the OAE was made possible through the support of the German foundations the Klaus Tschira Foundation and the Carl Zeiss Foundation.
The IAU is the international astronomical organization that brings together more than 12 000 active 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 recognized 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.