First word to all of you that helped us making IYA2009 a huge success: Thank you very much!
As you may know, I am starting now my new position as International Project Manager for Universe Awareness. I am extremely thrilled with this new endeavour and excited to continue in education and public outreach of astronomy.
Currently we are finalising the negotiations with the European Commission for the European Universe Awareness FP7 programme. This programme will be coordinated by the University of Leiden (The Netherlands) in cooperation with the Heidelberg University (Germany), Universitat Politècnica De Catalunya (Spain), INAF – Arcetri Observatory (Italy), South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa) and Armagh Observatory (United Kingdom). While these institutions are the direct beneficiaries of the FP7 project, the resources and know-how produced will enable and foster the international UNAWE network. As soon as the negotiations come to an end, we will inform you of the outcome.
However we can already highlight some of the key areas that will keep us busy in the next months: production of educational resources, development of a new on-line educational resources repository as well as, educators training. But I count on you to keep the momentum going for the current projects and activities.
In the next weeks, I will be settling down in my new position in Leiden. By the end of the January I would like to talk with most of you over the phone or skype to get to know better your projects in more detail.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank George and Carolina for all the hard work that they have done in the last years. UNAWE has tackled successfully difficult issues head-on in the last years, especially during IYA2009. It has inspired many underprivileged children about our place in the Universe and on Earth. I have indeed a difficult job to keep up with such high standards.
I am really looking forward to working with all of you and keep up with the good work.
International Project Manager