On 16th May, 2018, under the auspices of the Ghana National Commission for UNESCO, the first-ever Museum of Light will be commissioned in Accra at the Museum of Science and Technology, Adabraka.
The event is expected to bring together people from academia, world of physics, school children, the general public, etc.
Under an international partnership project involving the African Physical Society, the European Physical Society, the Mexican delegation at UNESCO, the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Ghana National Commission for UNESCO, Ghana, at the 190th Session of the UNESCO Executive Board, initiated a process that eventually resulted in the proclamation by the United Nations, of the year 2015 as the International Year of Light and Light-Based Technologies (IYL, 2015).
In May 2013, UNESCO made a case for an International Year of Light at the United Nations General Assembly. The proposal was endorsed by the United Nations and proclaimed at the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly in November, 2013. Subsequently, an International Year of Light was proclaimed by the UN – a tremendous opportunity to coordinate international activities and promote new initiatives to support the revolutionary potential of light technologies.
Following from there, Ghana led Africa to celebrate the event through numerous activities including the hosting of an International Conference and Exhibition to harness the potential of light and light-based technologies for Africa’s development on the theme ‘Harnessing Light and Light-based Technologies for Africa’s development‘ – http://www.light2015.unescoghana.org/res/publications/program_brochure_final.pdf
Ghana, at the end of the Conference, developed four (4) outcomes to maximize its benefit from the celebration:
In actualizing the fourth outcome, UNESCO, through its Participation Programme Scheme, provided a seed money for the establishment of the Museum of Light.
The establishment of this interactive museum was being led by the late Prof. Francis K. A. Allotey, a renowned Ghanaian Mathematician who had a trove of work in light and light-based technologies. The aim of the establishment of the Museum of Light, among other things, is to whip up interest in the study of science among the youth in Ghana, especially girls.
Ghana Museums and Monuments Board, in sharing the vision of the Ghana National Commission for UNESCO, has offered the 2nd floor of the Museum of Science and Technology to house the Museum of light.
Following from the successful commemoration of the International Year of Light, Ghana, together with Mexico, New Zealand and the Russian Federation submitted to UNESCO, a proposal for the adoption of 16th May every year as an International Day of Light. The resolution was adopted with 15 additional co-sponsors from: Argentina, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Iran, Lebanon, Malaysia, Morocco, Nicaragua, Serbia, Nigeria, Paraguay, Qatar, Vietnam, and Uganda.
For more information on the international celebration of the Day, please visit https://www.lightday.org/