News Highlights

A Celebration of Light

ICTP to coordinate UN International Year of Light
ICTP to coordinate International Year of LightICTP to coordinate International Year of Light

27/02/2014 - Trieste, Italy

ICTP is delighted to announce that it will act as Global Secretariat for the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies (IYL) which will take place in 2015.  

The International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies is a global initiative adopted by the United Nations to raise awareness of how optical technologies promote sustainable development and provide solutions to worldwide challenges in energy, education, agriculture, communications and health. IYL actions during 2015 will promote improved public and political understanding of the central role of light in the modern world while also celebrating noteworthy scientific anniversaries in 2015, from the first studies of optics 1000 years ago to discoveries in optical communications that power the Internet today.  

ICTP scientist Joe Niemela, who will lead the coordination efforts, says, "Together with many partner societies in the fields of physics and optics, ICTP has been a major driver of the International Year of Light initiative since its launch in 2010. Our experience and our networks will allow us to identify new important partnerships and opportunities for education in light science, and the promotion of photonic technologies where they are needed, especially in developing countries."

With UNESCO as lead agency, the IYL Global Secretariat at ICTP will play a central role in coordinating the actions of the international scientific community and stakeholders with the UNESCO International Basic Sciences Programme at UNESCO headquarters in Paris.

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About the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies

Founding Scientific Sponsors of IYL 2015 are the American Physical Society (APS), the European Physical Society (EPS), the IEEE Photonics Society (IPS), the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE), the International Network and The Optical Society (OSA). 

The International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies resolution was adopted on the recommendation of the United Nations Second Committee, with co-sponsorship from 35 countries: Argentina, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chile, China, Colombia, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, France, Ghana, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mauritius, Mexico, Montenegro, Morocco, Nepal, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Palau, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Somalia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine and United States of America.