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SynoPSIs -- A brief report on the state of Astronomy in India and Southern Africa

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

I have spent the last four years living in India and South Africa. While far apart on the globe, they share many similarities. Both are ‘developing world’ countries that have large social and economic challenges. But both countries have also made great strides in the last decades in growing their astronomy research programs and trying to make a contribution to world science. South Africa — despite a very poor population still recovering from apartheid — is to be the site of the largest radio telescope in the world: the Square Kilometer Array (SKA). And India, despite having nearly a billion people living on barely a dollar a day each, has joined the very small league of countries that have flown spacecraft to Mars. I’ll give an overview of the state of state of astronomy research in both countries, and talk about my involvement in research and E/PO.

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