On 16 May 2021, people around the world will celebrate the central role that light plays in the lives of the citizens of the world in areas of science, culture and art, education, sustainable development, and in fields as diverse as medicine, communications and energy by creating their own events. While taking part in a global celebration may seem intimidating, it is actually very easy to create an event.

1. No need to re-invent the wheel. 

There are many examples of events that worked out quite well during the International Year of Light in 2015. Scientific institutions organized open-days in their labs, held lectures, workshops, exhibitions, full-day events combining presentations and discussions, as well as conferences. There were many light-themed exhibitions and festivals for the general public. Astronomers organized star-parties, scientists visited schools to discuss what they do, artists shared their passion about light with art, music, illumination and light installations. Some people wrote articles about light in magazines or blogs and others organized light-themed film festivals, light walks, commemorative stamps. These are just few representative examples! For more ideas on what you can do, read the IYL2015 Final Report.

2. We are flexible! Are you already organizing an activity about light in May but not on May 16th? No problem. As long as it follows and respect the general goals of the International Day of Light in promoting science, education, art, culture etc. related to the broad themes of light and light-based technologies, we would welcome them as International Day of Light activities.

3. Spread the word. Please don't hesitate to spread the word to your colleagues, especially to your friends and family outside the community that already understands and appreciates the power of light. Light is a beautiful cultural metaphor for openness, inclusion and enlightenment - all qualities that the world todayneedsmorethanever. WeshouldnotkeeptheInternationalDayofLighttoourselves,butweshould make sure that we involve everyone! Many of these people might get inspired and organize their own initiatives.

4. Reach out to your National Node. Would you like to get in contact with other people that are organizing events in your country or region? The best way is to contact the IDL 2021 national that are formed in different countries to coordinate, promote, and implement activities taking into account the needs and characteristics of different regions around the world. Getting in contact with your node is a great opportunity to benefit of larger networks to disseminate further your event, share best practices and find out about what will be organized in your country/region. For more information on IDL 2021 National nodes, please visit lightday.org/nodes.

5. Anticipate a Hybrid Event.  With the uncertainty about the global COVID pandemic likely to continue into 2021, we recommend that your initial planning consider a hybrid event, with online international speakers combined with a local audience and perhaps even local outreach events.  We will be providing regular ideas for how such events can be organized so please keep looking at this website for updates.  

6. Don’t forget to register it! The International Day of Light is a global celebration and we want to showcase in our Event Programme all the interesting initiatives that will be organized. Be sure to include your event on the IDL2021 Event Programme Page by registering here.

7. Engage with us! You can connect with the official IDL social media channels to share event updates, images and news. We encourage you to follow the IDL  Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages and by using the hashtag #LightDay2021.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

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A Quick Guide to Organising an Event for the 2021 International Day of Light