— a free peer-reviewed journal for astronomy communicators, online and in print
Public communication of astronomy provides an important link between the scientific astronomical community and society, giving visibility to scientific success stories and supporting both formal and informal science education. While the principal task of an astronomer is to further our knowledge of the Universe, disseminating this new information to a wider audience than the scientific community is becoming increasingly important. This is the main task of public astronomy communication — to bring astronomy to society.
The International Year of Astronomy 2009 was a unique platform to inform the public about the latest discoveries in astronomy as well as to emphasize the essential role of astronomy in science education. However, as the astronomy outreach community expanded globally, it became increasingly important to establish a community of science communication experts.
The IAU DIVISION XII Commission 55 Communicating Astronomy with the Public Journal Working Group prepared a study assessing the feasibility of the Communicating Astronomy with the Public Journal (CAPjournal). The conclusions were inescapable. The present situation of public astronomy communication shows a clear need for a publication addressing the specific needs of the public astronomy communication community.
The main objectives are:
The journal is published quarterly, and is divided into 10 sections:
The “Research & Applications” section contains peer-reviewed science communication ‘research’ articles. “News” and “Announcements” present information and updates, such as conference reports from the astronomy outreach community. “Resources” and “Innovation” provide a repository of outreach ideas and cutting-edge astronomy communication methods respectively. “Best Practices” aims to be a guide, containing case studies, to the techniques that work best in communicating astronomy. “Opinion” provides space for subjective discussions of topics related to astronomy communication.
Public communication of astronomy is a burgeoning field of science communication. We would like to see the astronomy outreach community deeply involved in this journal’s evolution and production. Please feel free to send us your articles and reviews on communicating astronomy, as well as suitable books/websites/products for review in the pages of CAPjournal. Submission guidelines are here. Relevant advertisements are also more than welcome. We are eager to get your feedback, so please feel free to e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read more about the CAPJournal Project in this PDF article presented at the conference Communicating Astronomy with the Public 2007: The Communicating Astronomy with the Public Jounal - A study from the IAU Division XII Commission 55 CAPJournal Working Group
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