Planning begins for the first International Day of Light in 2018

Following the highly successful International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015, the Executive Board of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) has endorsed an annual International Day of Light. The purpose of an International Day of Light will be to provide an annual focal point for the appreciation of the role that light plays in the lives of the citizens of the world in areas of science, culture, education, sustainable development, and in fields as diverse as medicine, communications and energy. The broad theme of light will allow many different sectors of society to participate in activities around the world to raise awareness of science and technology, art and culture, and their importance in achieving the goals of UNESCO — education, equality and peace.

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The International Day of Light will be proclaimed at the General Conference of UNESCO in November 2017 and the first celebration will take place on 16 May 2018. Partners around the world are now beginning ambitious plans for a wide range of local celebrations and activities to raise awareness of the many different ways light impacts society. In addition, an official inauguration ceremony will take place at the headquarters of UNESCO in Paris in the afternoon and evening of 16 May 2018, involving presentations from Nobel laureates and other scientists, industry leaders, as well as a wide range of other partners from sectors including art, architecture, lighting, design and NGOs.

About the International Day of Light

The International Day of Light is administered from the International Basic Science Programme (IBSP) of UNESCO by a Steering Committee that includes representatives from UNESCO as well as: the American Institute of Physics (AIP), the American Physical Society (APS), Bosca, the European Physical Society (EPS), the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD), the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), the IEEE Photonics Society (IPS), Light: Science and Applications, lightsources.org - the international network of accelerator based light sources, The Optical Society (OSA), Philips Lighting, the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE), and Thorlabs.  The Steering Committee is assisted by an Advisory Board representing all sectors of the community of light science and technology, astronomy, lighting and applications, art, energy, architecture, and lighting design, as well as representatives from international organizations.

All potential partners interested in organizing local activities under the banner of the International Day of Light or attending the inaugural event in Paris are invited to contact the Steering Committee at the addresses below. 

Contacts

John Dudley
Steering Committee Chair
Steering Committee Chair of IDL 2018
john.dudley@univ-fcomte.fr

Jean-Paul Ngome Abiaga
Assistant Programme Specialist
International Basic Sciences Programme
UNESCO HQ, Paris
jj.ngome-abiaga@unesco.org