International Year of Light Announces Philips Lighting as First Patron Sponsor

The United Nations (UN) General Assembly 68th Session has proclaimed 2015 as the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies (IYL 2015). The International Year of Light is the initiative of a large Consortium of scientific bodies with UNESCO as lead agency, and the IYL 2015 Consortium is delighted to announce partnership in this International Year with Royal Philips – global leader in lighting solutions – as first Patron Sponsor.

In proclaiming an International Year focusing on the topic of light science and its applications, the United Nations has recognized the importance of raising global awareness of how light-based technologies promote sustainable development and provide solutions to global challenges in energy, education, agriculture and health.

Harry Verhaar, Head of Global Public and Government Affairs at Philips Lighting comments: “The transformative power of light is immense as we have seen over the last 120 years of Philips’ history – from the launch of the first commercial incandescent bulb through to connected LED lighting solutions. Lighting has now entered a digital era, where sustainable LED technologies are connected to networks, devices and apps and placed to address the world’s challenges like never before. 2015 and the International Year of Light presents the opportunity to realize the potential of recent innovations in light to benefit people both socially and economically, while addressing global challenges like climate change at the same time.”

As a Patron of the International Year of Light, Philips will work closely with the IYL2015 Consortium to design and implement actions throughout 2015 to highlight the crucial role that light and light-based technologies play in improving the quality of people’s lives worldwide.

Philips will play a leading role in several specific areas throughout 2015. During the Opening Ceremony at UNESCO HQ in January 2015 and at other events during the year, Philips will participate in high-level Round Tables discussing the need for innovative lighting solutions to address issues of energy efficiency and climate protection.

Philips will also support a key programme of the International Year of Light focussing on the fact that for over 1.5 billion people around the world, night-time means either darkness or the dim glow of an unhealthy kerosene lamp or candle. With specific emphasis on the impact this has on educational opportunities, Philips will participate in the IYL2015 programme “Study after Sunset” to promote the use of portable solar-powered high-brightness LED lanterns in regions where there is little or no reliable source of light.

Maciej Nalecz, Director, Executive Secretary of the International Basic Sciences Programme at UNESCO HQ in Paris adds “UNESCO is very keen to engage with Private Sector partners in its activities in areas of sustainability and development, and Philips Lighting is a natural partner of the International Year of Light. We look forward to working with them during 2014 and 2015

About IYL 2015

The International Year of Light and Light-Based Technologies (IYL 2015) is a global initiative adopted by the United Nations (A/RES/68/221) to raise awareness of how optical technologies promote sustainable development and provide solutions to worldwide challenges in energy, education, agriculture, communications and health. With UNESCO as lead agency, IYL 2015 programs will promote improved public and political understanding of the central role of light in the modern world while also celebrating noteworthy anniversaries in 2015—from the first studies of optics 1,000 years ago to discoveries in optical communications that power the Internet today. The IYL Global Secretariat is located at the International Centre of Theoretical Physics ICTP. Founding Partners of IYL 2015 are the American Physical Society (APS), the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft (DPG), the European Physical Society (EPS), the IEEE Photonics Society (IPS), the Institute of Physics (IOP), the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE), the International Network and The Optical Society (OSA).

14 Apr