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Inspiring Stars Inauguration Event
at the IAU General Assembly 2018

20 August 2018


Group of learners exploring a 3D Moon model during A Touch of the Universe activity in India. Credit: A Touch of the Universe.

Inspiring Stars — IAU inclusive world exhibition is a travelling international exhibition led by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) and supported by the American Astronomical Society (AAS). It is designed to highlight, support, and promote inclusive initiatives to encourage equality of participation in outreach and teaching, and at a professional level in the field of astronomy. The exhibition will be inaugurated on 22 August in the Austria Center Vienna, during the IAU General Assembly 2018 in Vienna, Austria.

The IAU invites all attending members, members of Austrian organisations that cater for people with disabilities and/or impairments, the Austrian astronomical community, and members of the public to visit the exhibition and the special events taking place during the inauguration. The attendance to the inauguration is free. To participate, please go to the Austria Center Vienna on 22 August and ask for an Inspiring Stars Guest Badge at the Registration Desk.

On 22 August, all visitors to the exhibition will be able to engage with interactive displays that showcase various resources for multisensorial exploration in astronomy from around the world. These include tactile planets, books, and posters (Spain, USA), a multisensorial optical telescope (USA), a tactile telescope model (Japan), software that translates astronomical data into audio output (Argentina and Australia), and many more. The inauguration event will feature six distinguished invited speakers, who will share their experiences as scientists with impairments and/or disabilities.

Inspiring Stars allows all audiences to experience astronomy as a universal science that celebrates, encourages, reinforces, and addresses diversity, and its great scientific achievements as the product of ordinary, determined people. By addressing inclusion, astronomy becomes a  successful and innovative science, paving the way for other scientific disciplines to actively motivate and support inclusivity.

Inspiring Stars is a collaboration between the IAU Secretariat, the IAU Office of Astronomy for Development, and the IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach, with the support of the American Astronomical Society (AAS). With Inspiring Stars, the IAU aims to move forward with its existing actions for the promotion of inclusion and equal participation in science. Inspiring Stars is a collaborative initiative with organisations serving the disabled and/or impaired in national/local communities.


Maria Rosaria D’Antonio

Head of IAU Administration


Jorge Rivero González

IAU100 Coordinator

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