17th National Festival In Popular Astronomy: AfAS Is Calling For Proposals

The 17th National Festival in Popular Astronomy, being organised by the African Astronomical Society (AfAS), will be hosted by the Sirius Astronomy Association under the theme “Under One Sky” in line with the IAU 100 celebrations. The Festival is scheduled to take place in Constantine, Algeria from October 3-5, 2019.

The aims of the 17th National Festival in Popular Astronomy are to:

  • Spread the culture of astronomy, and concomitantly the culture of science;
  • Provide thematic training for Amateur Astronomers/Education & Public Outreach Individuals;
  • Strengthen continental links between astronomy associations and participating individuals; and
  • Engage in joint education and outreach projects.

AfAS is looking to sponsor a proposed exhibit of an original project or a high impact public talk on an astronomy related subject. The proposals must be aligned to the vision of AfAS to create a globally competitive and collaborative astronomy community in Africa, as well as its mission to be the voice of astronomy on the continent and to contribute to addressing the challenges faced by Africa through the promotion and advancement of astronomy.

Three successful exhibitions and/or presentations proposed to AfAS will be showcased at the 17th National Festival in Popular Astronomy One person will be sponsored per successful proposal. AfAS will sponsor a return flight ticket to each of the three proposers of the successful exhibitions or presentations.

The Sirius Astronomy Association will support local costs including hotel accommodation, meals and return airport transfers (only in Algeria) for the successful proposer.

To qualify for sponsorship, the following criteria must be met:

  • The submission must be made by the originator of the proposal;
  • The proposer must be an African amateur astronomer or an Education & Public Outreach astronomer. Priority will be given from candidates outside the immediate region of the event (North Africa);
  • An individual must submit only one entry;
  • The proposed exhibition or presentation must be original and strive to show diversity of Africa and its regions in astronomy activities;
  • The proposal must have:
  1. Name of the proposer; along with contact details and a short CV (no longer than two pages;
  2. Name of African Country;
  3. Name of institution/association and a contact person (other than the proposer) from the institution/association should be provided; and
  4. Description of the proposed exhibition or presentation to be showcased at the 17th National Festival in Popular Astronomy.

Evidence of appreciable involvement with the local astronomical community will be looked upon favourably.

The proposals must be no longer than three pages, and must be forwarded in Portable Document Format (.pdf) format.  The description of the proposal may be supported by a PowerPoint presentation with pictures and diagrams (less than 25MB).

Deadline for submissions is August 30, 2019 (The deadline has been extended to 10 September 2019.). Selection will be made by the AfAS Executive Committee, and selected candidates will be informed by September 7, 2019. Video or phone interview may be conducted with some candidates if deemed necessary

Interested persons should send their proposals and personal details to: Charles.Takalani@dst.gov.za

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