Regional Offices Activities: Oct- Dec 2020


  • The Office is developing a work proposal for the next 5 years. Topics include astrotourism, computational skills, astronomy in schools, astronomical observatories


  • The office organized an Intensive Course on Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) & Remote Sensing (RS) & Geographic Information Systems (GIS), in cooperation with the Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia (RCSSTE-WA)
  • Fifth Middle-East and Africa Regional IAU Meeting (MEARIM V 2020) was jointly organized by the Arab Regional office of astronomy for development (AW-OAD), The Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia/ United Nations, the Arab Union for Astronomy and Space Sciences (AUASS) and Jordanian astronomical society (JAS). The topics covered all aspects of astronomy that are relevant for African and Middle East astronomers.

East Africa

  • The EA-ROAD co-organized ‘ the Great Conjunction’ of Jupiter and Saturn event on 23 Dec 2020 with ESSTI and ESSS. The event was broadcasted live via television program of Balageru Television
  • From 04-10 October 2020, EA-ROAD Co-organized the World Space Week (WSW2020) celebration with ESSTI with a team “Satellites to Improve Life” celebrated in Ethiopia
  • The office, co-organized with ESSTI, a farewell for Dr. Solomon Belay, to acknowledge and give thanks for his contributions in launching the EA-ROAD office in Ethiopia as well as for the development of space science in Ethiopia and East Africa

East Asia

  • Astronomy Night was organized at the TianMa Observational Site, Shanghai
  • Around 100 students finished their mini-research projects in the Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences


North America

  • The NA-ROAD has been working on the development of a 5-year Strategic Plan. The 16-member Strategic Planning Committee is made up of individuals from the United States, Mexico, Canada, the Caribbean Region, and one person from Europe. The Strategic Planning Committee is using the NA-ROAD needs Assessment results to inform the process.

Portuguese Language

  • Live webinar for “World Space Week” with representatives from 6 countries
  • Online Teacher training course offered by MAST (Brazil) with participation of teachers from Brazil, Cape Verde and Mozambique (Oct – Dec)
  • Joint event “Girls Day in Science” organized by Patricia Spinelli (MAST – Rio, Brazil) with participation of women scientists from Brazil, Cape Verde and Mozambique (Dec 5)

South East Asia

  • SEA-ROAD organized a webinar “A dialog on the role of astronomy in the COVID era” to allow the stakeholders of SEAROAD to share and learn about regional actions related to COVID, provide a platform for stakeholders to brainstorm regional collaborations, and initiate dialogue on the importance of science policy during the post COVID era.
  • On December 8th, 2020, the virtual Agreement on Southeast Asian Regional Office of Astronomy for Development (SEA-ROAD) was signed for another 6 year of extension between the International Astronomical Union (IAU) – represented by Kevin Govender, IAU Office of Astronomy for Development Director and Saran Poshyachinda, NARIT Executive Director. The ceremony was witnessed virtually by Teresa Lago, IAU General Secretary and colleagues across Southeast Asia.

South West And Central Asia

  • The office participated in several conferences and events during this period: invited lecture at Eighth Summer School of Astronomy, 2nd Shaw-IAU Workshop on Astronomy for Education, presentations at the Middle East and Africa Regional IAU Meeting, IAU Symposium #367 “Education and heritage in Big Data era in Astronomy”
  • Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS) School Lectures program was held in Armenian provinces; 23 lectures were given in 18 towns and villages of 6 provinces

Southern Africa

  • Zambia GOGA (Go Lab Goes Africa) workshop was held virtually with 20 science teachers in attendance. Attended the GOGA Conference in Nairobi which looked at ways of transforming STEM education in Africa. Golab activities from Zambia were presented.

West Africa

  • The West African, Southern African, East African, and North American Regional Offices are coordinating the project, ‘Online collaboration and studentship coaching amid COVID-19’, funded under the OAD COVID-19 call
  • CAMEROON ASTRO ART CONTEST was organized by Astronomy Club of Cameroon, Nkongsamba (ACC) in collaboration with Sterren Schitteren Voor Iedereen (SSVI), Euro Space Society, Public Observatory Orion Streekbos (Netherlands), IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach (OAO) and Space for Art Foundation.
  • Space Science and Technology Media Forum was held in Abuja on 04/12/2020. The Forum identified Space Science and technology as key tools to fight corruption in post COVID-19 Era
  • Hygiene support (for COVID-19) was provided for those in an internally displaced persons camp in Abuja
  • An E-Learning platform has been developed to help Undergraduate Students and the Secondary/High School Students using a COVID special grant from the OAD