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SPIE on global team proposing 'International Year of Light' at United Nations
Date:6/4/2013

Optics and photonics leaders from around the world including President-Elect Philip Stahl of SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, last month presented the widely supported International Year of Light (IYOL) proposal to representatives from United Nations (UN) Member States and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) at the UN Headquarters in New York.

The 16 May meeting was hosted by the Permanent Mission of Mexico to the UN, which, along with Ghana, New Zealand, and the Russian Federation, submitted the original IYOL proposal to the UNESCO Executive Board in October 2012. Following that board's adoption of the proposed resolution, 30 more countries became cosignatories.

With UNESCO endorsement for the IYOL and last month's meeting, the proposal will now move forward towards consideration for adoption by the UN General Assembly.

"The optics and photonics community certainly knows of the importance of light and light-based technology," said Dr. Stahl, a member of the IYOL Advisory Board. "Light underpins the world economy, enables a sustainable future, offers tremendous advances in human health and medicine, and inspires us to appreciate the beauty of our natural world and human culture. But these contributions are often invisible to the policy makers of the world and the general public. The UN declaring an International Year of Light willl help make light more visible and increase its appreciation."

The delegation of senior researchers in New York also included Ana Mara Cetto from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM); Yanne Chembo Kouomou from the African Physical Society; John Dudley of the Universit de Franche-Comt, President of the European Physical Society; and Anthony Johnson of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Past-President of The Optical Society and representative of ICTP, the International Centre for Theoretical Physics.

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Contact: Amy Nelson
amy@spie.org
360-685-5478
SPIE--International Society for Optics and Photonics
Source:Eurekalert

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