Registration is now closed. Conference recordings will be made available in early December. Thank you for your interest in dark sky conservation. Consider joining DarkSky’s Advocate Network to get involved! If you did register, you will soon be getting information sent to the email you used to register. Cheers to dark skies!
Jo Marchant is an award-winning science journalist and author of popular books including Decoding the Heavens and The Human Cosmos. Her writing explores the nature of humanity and our universe, from the mind-body connection to the mysteries of past civilizations and the awesome power of the night sky. This talk will explore the cultural importance of the sky – telling a story of how the Sun, Moon and stars have inspired and guided humanity since Palaeolithic times – and trace how our relationship with the stars has changed as we’ve built a scientific understanding of our universe and become more reliant on technologies from central heating to GPS. Jo will argue that alongside the elegant and powerful explanations of science, our physical, spiritual and ecological wellbeing depend on rediscovering a more personal connection with the cosmos in which we live.
Babak Tafreshi is an Iranian-American science photographer, cinematographer, and National Geographic explorer based in Boston area. Since 2007, Tafreshi has directed The World at Night program with a team of photographers in 20 countries. The program’s mission to reveal the value of natural dark skies and impact of light pollution was captured through The World at Night, a book authored by Tafreshi and published in multiple languages. Tafreshi uses visual stories, timelapse motion, and virtual reality to create an understandable portal to wonders of Earth and sky. His work is recognized by the 2022 National Geographic Wayfinder Award, the Royal Photography Society Award for Scientific Imaging, and the 2009 Lennart Nilsson Award. In addition, the International Astronomical Union named the 2-km minor planet 276163 after Tafreshi.
Ruskin Hartley joined DarkSky International as its executive director in 2019. Ruskin brings more than 20 years of conservation experience to guide DarkSky’s work to protect the night sky. Ruskin has spent his career directing and managing conservation programs that protect the nation’s land, water, and ocean resources–from primeval forests to the iconic beaches of Southern California.
Tom is a retired Washington, D.C., lawyer who spent most of his career representing airlines and railroads in labor and employment matters, including extensive experience translating scientific experts for lay decision-makers. He is a graduate of Harvard College and the Harvard Law School.
His environmental activism included a decade fighting water pollution with local riverkeeper organizations on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. In 2013, seeing the Andromeda Galaxy for the first time with his naked eyes from atop Kitt Peak rekindled an interest in astronomy and a desire to eliminate light pollution.
Currently residing in Northern Virginia, he and his wife Chris travel extensively in the Western United States seeking dark sky locations. For several years he has assisted DarkSky as a volunteer on legal and public policy issues at the national level.
Samyukta is an astrotourism consultant and the director of Noctia Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the protection of natural dark skies. With a background in science communication, outreach, astrotourism, and experience design, Samyukta is interested in an interdisciplinary approach to dark sky conservation that integrates science with cultural and environmental preservation.
Karen Trevino has spent the past 18 years in different capacities with the U.S. National Park Service. She currently heads up the NPS Natural Sounds and Night Skies Division (NSNSD) to advance the mission of the National Park Service by supporting parks and partners in the preservation and restoration of acoustic and photic environments, advancing scientific understanding and inspiring public appreciation of natural sounds and night skies. In addition to her role as a member of the senior leadership team of Natural Resource Stewardship and Science directorate of the NPS, Karen sits on the NPS National Resource Advisory Group, the National Parks Overflights Advisory Group, the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas/Urban Parks Specialist Group Dark Sky Advisory Group, the Federal Interagency Committee on Aviation Noise, the DOD Defense Noise Working Group and she spent ten years on the NPS National Wilderness Leadership Council. Karen was recently the key note speaker at the IALD/IES Light Fair Conference in New York and at New Zealand’s 2019 Starlight Conference in Tekapo NZ. Prior to her positions with the U.S. National Park Service, Karen was Director of Environmental Affairs for ASG Renaissance; served as Senior Counselor to the Assistant Secretary for Fish Wildlife and Parks at the U.S. Department of Interior and in that capacity headed the US World Heritage delegation; was an attorney in private practice in Washington DC specializing in natural resource law and policy; served as a legislative affairs specialist for the World Wildlife Fund US; and worked on Capitol Hill. Ms. Treviño received a BA from Michigan State University and completed her JD at the Washington College of Law at the American University in Washington DC where she specialized in international environmental and natural resource law and policy. While in law school in Washington, D.C., Karen interned at The Nature Conservancy and the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service. Karen lives in Colorado and spends any free time she has hiking, biking, skiing, white water rafting, cooking, playing tennis and hanging out with friends and family.
Since 2011, the Astronomical Society of the Jiangsu Tianyi High School has conducted practical exploration around “DarkSky Protection,” forming a popular science education model with a sequential curriculum design including popularization, academic and research courses. Popularization activities such as lectures and exhibitions are carried out mainly to develop students’ interest; the academic courses, including activities like teaching and observation, are primarily offered to consolidate professional knowledge; research activities such as luminous monitoring and remote sensing analysis are intended mainly to improve academic capabilities and cultivate reserve talents. Over the past decade, we have achieved remarkable results. A number of papers on “DarkSky Protection” have been published in SCI-indexed journals and other academic journals in China and internationally, and multiple related projects have won awards in academic competitions in China and abroad.
Vietnam’s burgeoning construction market is currently undergoing rapid growth, leading to a frenzied reshaping of the nocturnal landscape in its cities. Unfortunately, the nascent lighting industry and the lack of established standards have resulted in a significant increase in lighting pollution in recent years. Although it may be tempting to attribute this issue solely to domestic factors, it is crucial to acknowledge that both national and international consultants are involved in Vietnamese lighting projects.
This presentation aims to explore how a multicultural context can positively and/or negatively influence the lighting trends in an under-development country and how leveraging cultural differences using Intercultural Intelligence should mitigate the excess or mis-control of light.
This presentation will cover what light pollution is in terms of wildlife, why it’s a problem, how the Australian Government has responded, the ongoing challenges of managing light pollution for wildlife and what next steps might be to better address light pollution.
Carol will speak about dark sky advocacy in Kenya, the DarkSky Kenya Chapter, and how to get started with dark sky advocacy in your area!
The Travelling Telescope is a social enterprise dedicated to promoting science and technology using astronomy tools and concepts. We take our computerised portable telescope and mobile planetarium around Kenya and Tanzania educating the public about our universe and emphasizing the importance of protecting our fragile planet. We focus on two main areas, Education and Tourism. We also recently built a permanent planetarium with the dome built out of bamboo. This is the only permanent planetarium in East Africa.
We partner with lodges in Kenya and provide our services to their guests as an added experince. Most lodges we visit are in rural areas with limited light polution, we hope we can encourage this beautiful dark sky resource to be valued and preserved by communities and businesses around these areas. We also hope that we can encourage the next generation of leaders to value the natural unpolluted dark skies and hopefully make informed decisions about this preservation as we move towards more development.
We have been featured on CNN, BBC, Aljazeera and many other local and international media houses. Please visit our website for more information: www.travellingtelescope.co.uk
Join us for an unforgettable journey into the cosmos as we explore the captivating world of astrotourism and the magic of dark skies. Our engaging workshop is designed to ignite your passion for stargazing, deepen your understanding of astrotourism’s significance, and empower you to protect and promote the preservation of dark skies through this incredible tool.
Sisco was born in Namibia, a country in Southern Africa which has one of the lowest population densities in the world, which lends itself to unpolluted, dark night skies. She holds a PhD in Tourism Development from the Nelson Mandela University in South Africa. She is currently a researcher at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST). Her research interests are in Dark Sky Tourism, Indigenous Astronomy, and Community Development. She is working with the indigenous communities in Namibia to develop Dark Sky Tourism and bring awareness of the potential of this type of niche tourism to bring benefits to indigenous communities. She is a keen advocate for the preservation of the dark skies, a valuable resource for the sustainable development of Namibia.
Ahmed Althaher is an amateur astronomer with Mechanical Engineering degree from King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals (KFUPM).
Ahmed is an enthusiast with vast knowledge in many areas. During his study, he has been granted two patents for inventions that combine health with engineering in electronics devices, and luxury with the economy in consumable products, both of which were supported by KFUPM. As a multidisciplinary, Ahmed has many skills that consist of prototyping, ideas experimenting, product development, and patenting.
Eng. Ahmed has worked for The Arabian Robotics Company, where he managed the production of the first commercial batch of The Saudi Aramco Inspection Robot (SAIR) and gained experience in transferring products from the laboratory to the operational readiness level. He then worked for BAE Systems Saudi Arabia.
Equivalent to engineering, Ahmed is also passionate about astronomy and stargazing. About a decade ago, he started accompanying professional and academic astronomers during islamic crescent observations and astronomical phenomenon observations, like meteor showers and comet passages. Through his years of experience, he gained knowledge in astronomical observation methods and light pollution assessment, which makes him qualified to organize several interesting trips for stargazing and astronomical observation.
Eng. Ahmed is currently operating remarkable astronomical tourism by mixing both outdoor adventures and stargazing sessions at his small business; Judai Stargazing, which was designated as one of the most unique touring experiences in Saudi Arabia. Up to date, he delivered 34 stargazing sessions and 4 workshops in Astrotourism and Light Pollution Assessment in 6 cities around the kingdom. He also supported dark sky place program applicants in governmental and private sectors. In 2021, He was selected to be a Delegate of DarkSky International in Saudi Arabia. As of today, Eng. Ahmed is starting a new journey in astrotourism as he is joining Red Sea Global Company to design and lead Stargazing Experiences on the Red Sea Islands.
Stephen Hummel is the Dark Skies Initiative Coordinator with the University of Texas’ McDonald Observatory. Stephen works with communities, oil and gas companies, parks, governments, and other organizations in far western Texas to adopt better lighting practices and reduce light pollution. Stephen is committee chair for the Greater Big Bend International Dark Sky Reserve, the largest certified Dark Sky Place in the world. In his spare time, Stephen is an award-winning photographer of the night sky and has been featured by National Geographic, NASA, Smithsonian Magazine, and more.
Lya Shaffer Osborn is a multidisciplinary designer, writer, and advocate for design justice. She is a co-founder of LightJustice.org, a community resource for addressing the social impact of lighting. She also serves as the North America Regional Director for Unolai Lighting Design, where for the past seven years, she has contributed to a wide range of projects and award-winning design efforts on both sides of the Pacific. Lya received a double M.F.A. in Lighting Design and Interior Design from Parsons The New School for Design, where her thesis work challenged the industry norms and incentives that have long defined a designer’s role in community, and proposed alternative modes of improving accessibility of design resources to the historically underserved. Lya is a member of the International Association of Lighting Designers and the Illuminating Engineering Society and is Community Friendly Lighting Certified.
Legal consultant in environmental law at first, Sterenn Poupard is today the coordinator of the Alpes Azur Mercantour International Dark Sky Reserve (IDSR). Based in the Southeast of France, Sterenn is working with the IDSR team to help elected municipal officials to make good lighting choices. She is also working with other entities to enforce the ministerial ruling on light pollution, which covers both public lighting and private-owned lighting. As the ministerial ruling is about to be updated, French IDSR never stopped promoting good lighting practices among their elected representatives, inhabitants, and companies.
2022 – UMWELTGERECHT BELEUCHTEN – Consulting, Communication & Events of Environmentaly Compatible Lighting; Lighting Design
► SYMPOSIUM FUTURE PROOF LIGHTING
► WIR UND DIE NACHT
2015 Lighting Design – Freelance for a.o. Licht Kunst Licht│ Esylux │ Lunux Lighting│ Schréder │ Stiftung Dom & Schlösser Sachsen-Anhalt │ Hochschule Harz Wernigerode│ DGUV and more
2012 – 2015 – Spittler Lichttechnik Lighting design & calculations indoor & outdoor │ Design Engineering I Lighting development for store and office lighting
since 2012–div. special training in Lighting Design
2002 – 2012 Freelance Work in Industrial and Graphic design; employed Project Lead & Design for social enterprises
1096 – 2002 – Dipl. Des. Industrial Design, GHKassel, UdK Berlin, focus: Light & Ambience in Daylights Gastronomy
1992 – 1995 – FU Berlin – Literature / Philosophy / Spanish
1991 – 92 Ecuador – Voluntary Social Year
1978 – 1991 general Education, high school diploma
Join our enlightening workshop on enacting dark sky policy, where we will delve into the critical realm of preserving natural nightscapes and combating light pollution. Join us for a comprehensive exploration of the policies and practices that can help safeguard our skies for generations to come.
James Lowenthal is the Mary Elizabeth Moses Professor of Astronomy at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, USA. He received his BS in Physics and Astronomy from Yale and his PhD in Astronomy from the University of Arizona. He studies the formation and evolution of galaxies, especially actively star-forming galaxies, as well as exoplanets. He leads the local advocacy group Northampton City Lights; is the Massachusetts Chapter Leader for IDA; chairs the Light Pollution Sub-Committee of the American Astronomical Society Committee for the Protection of Astronomy and the Space Environment; and is Vice-President of the International Astronomical Union’s Commission on Site Protection (i.e., light pollution).
David is an award-winning campaigner and environmental advocate. He has worked on a range of policy issues including plastic pollution, water quality, land use change and species recovery programmes. He currently works as Social Change and Advocacy Officer at Buglife – the Invertebrate Conservation Trust. David leads policy work to help save the small things that run the planet. His focus at the moment is on Invasive Non-Native Species, chemicals in freshwaters and light pollution. David is working to ensure that light pollution is recognised as an environmental pollutant with legally binding targets to lower pollution levels and relieve the pressure light pollution puts on the natural world.
Shelana deSilva is a writer, organizer, and policy consultant who is dedicated to creating a just and resilient society. She has a strong track record helping national and statewide nonprofits develop partnerships, lead campaigns and initiatives, design federal and state legislative strategies, and secure public funding to achieve their missions. Shelana created the first government affairs program for a 100 year-old California land trust, co-founded a new regional coalition focused on social equity and climate resilience, and helped secure tens of millions of dollars to steward California’s landscapes, build parks, and support climate adaptation. Working at the intersection of storytelling, justice, and stewardship practice, Shelana is actively decolonizing land conservation in California.
Professional in charge of managing Light Pollution and Electromagnetic Radiation in the Light Noise and Odor Department of the Chilean Ministry of the Environment.
Civil Engineer in Sound and Acoustics, with a Diploma in Architecture and Environment, with more than 10 years of work in public service. Since 2013 I was part of the Superintendency of the Environment (SMA), the body in charge of environmental oversight, in matters of noise and light pollution. During this period, I was also in charge of developing the protocols and procedures for the certification of luminaires under the Chilean Lighting Standard. Starting in 2019, I joined the Ministry of the Environment, in the Noise, Lighting and Odors Department, in charge of light pollution management, coordinating the review process of the Lighting Standard.
Español: Profesional encargado de la gestión en Contaminación Lumínica y Radiación Electromagnética en el Departamento Ruido Lumínica y Olores del Ministerio del Medio Ambiente Chile.
Ingeniero Civil en Sonido y Acústica, con un Diplomado en Arquitectura y Medio Ambiente, con más de 10 años de trabajo en el servicio público. Desde el 2013 formé parte de la Superintendencia del Medio Ambiente (SMA), organismo a cargo de la fiscalización ambiental, en materias de ruido y contaminación lumínica. Durante este periodo, también estuve encargado de elaborar los protocolos y procedimientos para la certificación de luminarias bajo la Norma Lumínica Chilena. A partir de 2019 me integré al Ministerio del Medio Ambiente, en el Departamento Ruido, Lumínica y Olores, a cargo de la gestión en contaminación lumínica, coordinando el proceso de revisión de la Norma Lumínica.
Sessions will happen across 24 hours beginning with a global opening on Friday, November 3rd at 3:00 PM PDT (10:00 PM UTC). Then, the conference will move to three regional sessions loosely based on timezones on Saturday, November 4th. Each regional session will be followed by engagement workshops. Then, conference attendees will come back together for a global closing session at 3:00 pm PDT (10:00 PM UTC). There will also be networking opportunities and an awards ceremony during the conference.
Friday, November 3
3:00 PM PDT
6:00 PM EDT
10:00 PM GMT/UTC
9:00 AM AEDT (November 4)
Global Networking Session
Friday, November 3
4:20 PM PDT
7:20 PM EDT
11:20 PM GMT/UTC
10:20 AM AEDT (November 4)
Regional Session #1
E & SE Asia, Australia, and New Zealand
Saturday, November 4
8:00 PM PDT (November 3)
11:00 PM EDT (November 3)
3:00 AM GMT/UTC
2:00 PM AEDT
Engagement Workshops Session #1
Saturday, November 4
9:45 PM PDT (November 3)
12:45 PM EDT
4:45 AM GMT/UTC
3:45 PM AEDT
Astrotourism Engagement Panel
Regional Session #2
Europe, Middle East, Africa, India
Saturday, November 4
3:00 AM PDT
6:00 AM EDT
10:00 AM GMT/UTC
9:00 PM AEDT
Engagement Workshops Session #2
Saturday, November 4
4:45 AM PDT
7:45 AM EDT
11:45 AM GMT/UTC
10:45 PM AEDT
Good Lighting Practice Engagement Workshop
Regional Session #3
North, Central and South America
Saturday, November 4
10:00 AM PDT
1:00 PM EDT
5:00 PM GMT/UTC
4:00 AM AEDT (November 5)
Engagement Workshops Session #3
Saturday, November 4
11:45 AM PDT
2:45 PM EDT
6:45 PM GMT/UTC
5:45 AM AEDT (November 5)
Policy Engagement Workshop
Virtual Awards Reception & Cocktail Hour
Saturday, November 4
1:45 PM PDT
4:45 PM EDT
8:45 PM GMT/UTC
7:45 AM AEDT (November 5)
Saturday, November 4
3:00 PM PDT
6:00 PM EDT
10:00 PM GMT/UTC
9:00 AM AEDT (November 5)
Night Reveals A Universe
T-shirts & sweatshits
Available in several colors & styles
November 3-4, 2023