11th United Nations/European Space Agency Workshop on Basic Space Science:
"World Space Observatory and Virtual Observatories in the era of 10m telescopes"

9-13 September 2002, Cordoba, Argentina

United Nations/European Space Agency Basic Space Science Workshops

Hosted by the Institute for Higher Space Studies "J. Mario Gulich" of the Comisión Nacional de Actividades Espaciales (CONAE) and the Universidad de La Plata, on behalf of the Government of Argentina

 Available online resources:

  • Programme (as of 30 August 2002) (available as a PDF file in English only)
  • Report of the Workshop (A/AC.105/784)


1. Background

The United Nations, in cooperation with the European Space Agency, initiated in 1990 the organization of annual Workshops on Basic Space Science under the auspices of the Programme on Space Applications of the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs. These Workshops, focusing on planetary exploration and astronomy, have been held in India (1991) and Sri Lanka (1995) for Asia and the Pacific, Costa Rica (1992) and Honduras (1997) for Central America, Colombia (1992) for South America, Nigeria (1993) and Mauritius (2001) for Africa, Egypt (1994) and Jordan (1999) for Western Asia, and Germany (1996) and France (2000) for Europe.

Among the projects identified to stimulate the participation of the developing countries in basic space science, the World Space Observatory ( WSO) has been initiated as a project, which could contribute in an important way in the stimulation of participation in space activities. The combination of such project with the simultaneous development of Virtual Observatories (VO) creates a powerful mechanism to enhance the basic space science activities in developing countries.

The scientific focus for the 11th Workshop in the series of UN/ESA Workshops on Basic Space Science for developing countries to be held in Cordoba, Argentina is foreseen to be associated with the observational aspects of the understanding of the structure and evolution of the Universe. The participation in experimental sciences may be more important for a sustainable development process in the pre-industrial countries than theoretical investigations. As a consequence the programme will concentrate on those aspects of the current state of knowledge about the structure and evolution of the Universe, which need effective new observational material. Through this it is expected that new venues will be identified to accelerate the participation of developing countries in basic space science, including the definition and continued stimulation of regional activities. At the same time, impact and achievements of the previous workshops in the development process will be reviewed.

2. Venue

Institute for Higher Space Studies "J. Mario Gulich"
Comisión Nacional de Actividades Espaciales (CONAE)
WWW: http://www.conae.gov.ar/
Phone: +54-11-4331-0074 Int. 302
Fax: +54-11-4331-3446
Email: rcolomb@conae.gov.ar

3. Programme of the Workshop

The Workshop is foreseen to be structured around the following topics:

  • Virtual Observatories and Automated Networks: How to Use Them
  • Major Statistical Studies as Observatories
  • The Great Eyes of Astronomy: Pathways to Evolution
  • WSO/UV: A Challenge
  • Comparative Planetology

During the Workshop, additional working group sessions will be held to develop future activities related to these topics. As part of the Workshop, visits to CONAE's Ground Receiving Station at the Teofilo Tabanera Space Center and the first Astronomical Observatory of Argentina at Cordoba will be organized for interested participants.

4. Call for Papers

This Workshop is the 11th in the series of UN/ESA Workshop on Basic Space Science and will be oriented to the opportunities for developing countries to participate actively in space observations and in the utilization of space technologies. Efforts will focus on the new environment available in astronomy, mainly brought about by the arrival of the information age. Emphasis will be placed on defining ways to make the developing countries participate directly in the process of data acquisition, rather than only archival research. Although the utilization of the archives from space missions represents a natural and efficient tool to initiate active participation in basic space science and increase scientific literacy, a follow up process for the learned skills must be created. Such a process represents probably a very effective input for an accelerated and sustainable development. It is expected to identify those frontiers of science in which the co-operation between scientists on a global scale can be applied effectively, with comparable resources available to all involved in a modern scientific communications environment.

5. Language of the Workshop

English and Spanish will be the working languages for the Workshop.

6. Important Date

Indication of Interest deadline is 01 July 2002.

7. Health Requirement and Related Topics

Potential participants are advised to check with the embassy/consulate of Argentina for obtaining the visa and/or transit visa, if required. Note that adequate health insurance is the responsibility of the participants.

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