International Astronomical Union (IAU)

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The key activity of the IAU is the organization of scientific meetings. Every year the IAU sponsors 9 international IAU Symposia. The IAU Symposium Proceedings series is the flagship of the IAU publications. Every three years the IAU holds a General Assembly, which offers 6 IAU Symposia, some 15 Focus Meetings, and individual business and scientific meetings of Divisions, Commissions, and Working Groups and Offices. The proceedings of Focus Meetings are published in the Astronomy in Focus series. The triennial reports of the Divisions and Commissions are published in the Transactions of the IAU - A series.The reports of the GA business meetings are published in the Transactions of the IAU - B series.

Among the other tasks of the IAU are the definition of fundamental astronomical and physical constants; unambiguous astronomical nomenclature and informal discussions on the possibilities for future international large-scale facilities. Furthermore, the IAU serves as the internationally recognized authority for assigning designations to celestial bodies and surface features on them.

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