Partners and Stakeholders
The APA identifies the followings as partners and stakeholders:
APA is funded by the DSI under the umbrella of AfAS.
Quite a number of planetaria across the continent are supported by the government and therefore we look to explore the possibilities of stronger collaborations with each and local Governmental Institutions. Notably, thanks to the support expressed by the DSI towards both AfAS and the APA, it was unanimously decided that the APA will be registered as a South African based organisation. The APA wishes to work more closely with the SA Government in the future. These collaborations, at a SA and international level, could include fostering support towards e.g., student exchange programs within the continent to train the next generation of planetaria operators, the organisation of regional conferences, endorsements etc. APA will have an opportunity to work with the government to promote astro tourism through guide training in the planetarium as well as to create content for the planetarium to be shared with the rest of the world showcasing the African biodiversity, the African dark skies but also unique national features and cultures.
International Astronomical Union (IAU)
In 2019 the IAU through its Division C/Commission C2 “Communicating Astronomy with the public” has signed an MoU with the IPS in order to foster the collaborations of these two interconnected communities. In 2020 this collaboration is transcending the boundaries of Commission C2 to incorporate other aspects such as the exploration of Planetaria technology for novel Astronomical research and Development. Through the partnership between the IPS and the IAU, the APA hopes to establish closer links with the IAU as a whole and through their different offices like the Office for Astronomy for Development (OAD) or the Office for Astronomy Outreach (OAO) as well as the newly established Office for Astronomy Education (OAE). Thanks to this link, the APA hopes to gain support through calls for proposals that can benefit APA members at large
African Astronomical Society (AfAS)
There is a natural symbiosis between AfAS and the APA. While the first serves as a scientific astronomical organisation, the other serves as an education and public outreach reference and therefore supports each other. APA can demystify science research through AfAS astronomers and make the content accessible to the general public through planetarium content development showcasing the novel scientific research developed across Africa. To foster this collaboration, the APA would like to invite Mr Takalani Nemaungani (DSI) to sit in the APA board as Ex-Officio member with the role of advisor and as reference for AfAS and the SA government.
International Planetarium Society (IPS)
This partnership will create stronger relationships and opportunities for planetaria in Africa with the rest of the world. The APA will be able to negotiate with IPS discounts for African members to attend global meetings and to open up exchange programs for African planetarians to access training in the IPS communities. The APA will also be able to negotiate with IPS service providers to have discounted rates for their products, share useful information including free resources e.g. software and planetarium movies from accredited institutions like ESO. Similarly, APA will be able to encourage their members to share their original contents with the larger IPS community while promoting local African contents in an International context.
POSSIBLE FUTURE PARTNERS: there also exists natural symbiosis between the objectives of APA and various science centres in Africa, especially as far as science communication and education are concerned. APA can make a considerable contribution to enrich astronomy education taking place at the science centres. In addition, digital planetaria can also address any other disciplines where visualization plays an important role. Future partners and stakeholders can thus also include any institution / organization / profession focusing on science communication in particular science journalism with emphasis on Africa’s biodiversity, dark skies but also unique features and cultures