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The Anton Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy recently welcomed eight international students for its inaugural edition of the Astronomy Summer Programme for International Research Experience (Aspire). The goal of the programme, which received a Science4all grant from the Faculty of Science, is to offer research experience to students from countries or groups where opportunities to do research is scarce.

Summer school students Oudemanhuispoort
Summer school students. Photo: UvA

The Master's and Bachelor's level students will spend 10 weeks at the astronomy institute, working on individual research projects advised by postdoctoral fellows. The group consists of six women and two men and come from Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, El Salvador, Kenya, Pakistan, Venezuela, and Zambia.

Research training

The students gain research training at a world leading astronomy institute, while in return our postdocs gain skills in advising and mentoring that will aid them in their future research careers.

Ultimately, by actively engaging with students from groups and countries less represented at the Anton Pannekoek Institute, we hope for a knowledge exchange that will support the diversification and internationalisation of the API research group at all levels.


The Faculty of Science wants to be an inclusive community where every person, regardless of race, gender or cultural background, feels welcome and valued. Looking for ways to stimulate diversity of our community, the Faculty of Science started the Science4all Grassroots programme. Students and staff were invited students and staff to submit ideas for all kinds of activities, such as a symposium, cultural or social activities, PR materials or a web campaign, for which they could receive financial support from the Faculty.