Creative Astronomy for Development

Kevin Govender

  • Duration: 60min
  • Language: English
  • Ages: All Ages
  • Date: November 03, 2021 20:00
  • Recorded: Live session with recording available afterwards
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In line with the 2021 theme of Scifest, this talk will look at the science of Astronomy and how the International Astronomical Union, in partnership with the South African National Research Foundation and Department of Science and Innovation, have stimulated creative ways of using astronomy for development. The Office of Astronomy for Development was established in 2011 and has since supported over 200 projects, reaching over 100 countries, and established 11 regional offices around the world.

We will reflect on the work of this Office in creatively using all aspects of Astronomy to contribute to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.


Kevin Govender is the founding and current director of IAU Office of Astronomy for Development (OAD), established in 2011, now with 11 regional offices and language centres globally. Previously Manager of the Southern African Large Telescope’s Collateral Benefits Programme at the South African Astronomical Observatory, and facilitator for the establishment of the African Astronomical Society. Past Chair of Scifest Africa Scientific Advisory Committee. Experimental nuclear physics background, with experience in community and school development initiatives in post-apartheid South Africa. Joint recipient of the Edinburgh Medal, together with the IAU, for “the creation and practical establishment of the Office of Astronomy for Development, which integrates the pursuit of scientific knowledge with social development for and with those most in need”.