The Office of Astronomy for Development (OAD) has announced the results of its 2022 call for proposals. Nineteen projects, including 11 from Africa, have been selected to receive a total of EUR 113,011 in 2023 to promote sustainable development using astronomy-related solutions. In addition, two ongoing multi-year projects, funded from 2021 to 2023, will receive EUR 11 000 this year.
This call for proposals was the OAD’s 11th annual call for proposals. Ninety applications were received at stage 1, from which 41 were selected for stage 2. The applications were assessed by an independent review panel comprising astronomy and development experts. They were responsible for making final selections which were subject to the approval of the OAD Steering Committee.
The themes for the call included the three OAD Flagships — Sustainable, local socio-economic development through Astronomy, Science diplomacy through Astronomy: Celebrating our Common Humanity, and Knowledge and Skills for Development — as well as a unique theme recognising the UN International Year of Basic Sciences for Sustainable Development.
The new projects have activities in 5 continents, including Africa, Europe, Asia, North America, and South America. The scope of the activities includes a programme that will train young women teachers to promote science education in rural Botswana; astro-tourism initiatives in Malaysia and India; development of an astro-tourism academic curriculum in Tanzania; and an after-school astronomy programme for families in a disadvantaged part of Northern Ireland.
Moreover, projects that have also received funding to include inclusive astronomy projects targeting persons with disabilities in rural Guatemala and blind and partially sighted persons in Canada, Mexico, and the US; an inspirational astronomy-based programme for soon-to-be-released prison inmates in Nigeria; physics and astronomy training for young women in parts of Pakistan affected by conflict; and mentorship programmes for school girls in rural Kenya, and marginalised students from Central America and the Caribbean. These projects are projected to be completed over three years.
The annual call for proposals is open to anyone from anywhere worldwide. With these projects, the IAU has granted almost EUR 1,200,000 to more than 200 projects since 2011, reaching people in over 100 countries. The next call is expected to be announced in April 2023.
To view the complete project list, kindly check here.