ESO Ultra HD Expedition: New clarity for astronomy outreach

Ryan J. M. Laird, Lars Lindberg Christensen

In the spring of 2014 a team of ESO Photo Ambassadors embarked on a pioneering expedition to the European Southern Observatory’s observing sites in Chile. Their mission was to capture time-lapses, stills, videos and panoramas in crisp Ultra High Definition from some of the darkest night skies on Earth.



Masterclasses in Science Communication: An international training programme for scientists and other professionals

Valentina Daelli, Paola Rodari

This paper seeks to highlight a significant shortcoming in the training of scientists and researchers. A survey of the experiences and needs of a sample of the scientific community has revealed a high level of interest in engaging with science communication projects, but there is a distinct lack of available training in why such projects are needed, and how to carry them out. Based on these findings, SISSA Medialab has developed a set of science communication Masterclasses for scientists, science communicators and other professionals. The content of these Masterclasses is outlined here, and the first stages of their evaluation are described. The courses are relevant across all scientific disciplines including astronomy.


Crowdfunding Astronomy Outreach Projects: Lessons learned from the UNAWE crowdfunding campaign

Abi J. Ashton, Thilina Heenatigala, Pedro Russo

In recent years, crowdfunding has become a popular method of funding new technology or entertainment products, or artistic projects. The idea is that people or projects ask for many small donations from individuals who support the proposed work, rather than a large amount from a single source. Crowdfunding is usually done via an online portal or platform which handles the financial transactions involved. The Universe Awareness (UNAWE) programme decided to undertake a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign centring on the resource Universe in a Box. In this article we present the lessons learned and best practices from that campaign.


Increasing Mathematics Engagement in an Astronomy Outreach Context

Mark Woodland

The ability to better understand the Universe is very enticing, but for many of us mathematics can be a steadfast barrier to getting there. This article explores the role of mathematics in astronomy outreach and shares my experience of using mathematics to engage an audience, rather than shying away from it.