Astronomical Heritage Finder


In collaboration
with the

International Astronomical Union


The international scientific community lies at the heart of the portal, in two important ways.

  • The core content—that is, the descriptions of a broad range of astronomical heritage entities and the thematic essays that highlight the broader issues that they raise—is based initially upon the case studies and chapters of the Thematic Study on the Heritage Sites of Astronomy and Archaeoastronomy. These were authored in 2010 by a joint group of astronomers, historians of astronomy and specialists in science heritage identified both by ICOMOS and the International Astronomical Union.
  • This database is dynamic, continually subject to update by peer review. Any authorised user may suggest modifications and additions, which are then open for discussion. Once a consensus is reached then the changes can be verified by an editorial team containing representatives of UNESCO and its advisory bodies, and then finally published so that they are open to public view.


The mechanism for discussion and debate is the forum (visible only to registered users). This is where users can propose and discuss modifications to existing thematic essays and case studies, and propose new entities, as well as debating wider issues. By registering and logging in to the system, any user can view discussions in progress.

Users authorised to suggest modifications and contribute to the forum include Thematic Study authors and members of the IAU Working Group on Astronomy and World Heritage. Users who wish to become authorised are asked to contact the content manager.

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