The United Nations has declared 2015 as the International Year of Light and Light-based technologies (IYL 2015). It is a proposal that attempts to highlight the great achievements that have been made on the knowledge and application of light and the importance of this scientific knowledge for the welfare of humanity.

The Barcelona Knowledge Hub of the Academia Europaea (AE-BKH), and the Portuguese Agency for Scientific and Technological Culture, Ciência Viva, joined efforts in organising a conference in Lisbon, in which many different aspects of light, including its biological and cultural effects were considered. The meeting was held (July 2-3, 2015), in the worldwide known Pavilhão do Conhecimento (Pavilion of Knowledge), one of the emblematic buildings made for the Lisbon World Fair of 1998, under the title “Light, from the Earth to the Stars.”

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In 2018, to commemorate the first International Day of Light (IDL), the AE-BKH organised a commemorative act on May 16th, in collaboration with the Catalan Society of Physics, the University of Barcelona, the Autonomous University of Barcelona and the Technical University of Catalonia. This consisted of a series of lectures focusing on the physics, biology and technologies of light, held in the Prat de la Riba Hall of the Institute for Catalan Studies (IEC). The session was coordinated by Ricard Guerrero, AE-BKH, and by Santiago Vallmitjana, Catalan Physics Society (SCF) and the Spanish Committee for IDL.

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