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Educational Activities

The IAU is active in promoting astronomy education worldwide. The overall activities in developed as well as developing countries are organised and coordinated by Commission 46. The two major IAU programmes specifically targeted at developing countries are the International Schools for Young Astronomers and the courses in Teaching for Astronomy Development.

The Travel Grant Programme of Commission 38 supports longer-term visits by astronomers to foreign institutions for educational and scientific purposes. Applications are received on a running basis; no special deadlines are enforced. Guidelines and application procedures for these travel grants are available here

In addition, the IAU will maintain close contacts with the new ICSU programme of Capacity Building in Science, which aims to address the worldwide problem of science illiteracy at all levels in society and for the sciences in general. Contacts are also being pursued with the Educational Initiatives in Basic Space Science undertaken by the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs with a view to possibly establishing a longer-term agreement on cooperation.

As part of these initiatives, the IAU organised a Special IAU-COSPAR-UN Educational Workshop: Capacity Building in Astronomy and Basic Space Science at the UNISPACE III Conference in Vienna in July 1999; the Observations and Recommendations of the Workshop and a preliminary Report are now available.

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