About ASTC

The Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) is a global organization providing collective voice, professional support, and programming opportunities for science centers, museums, and related institutions, whose innovative approaches to science learning inspire people of all ages about the wonders and the meaning of science in their lives. Through strategic alliances and global partnerships, ASTC strives to increase awareness of the valuable contributions its members make to their communities and the field of informal STEM learning.

Founded in 1973, ASTC now represents over 600 members in nearly 50 countries, including not only science centers and museums, but also nature centers, aquariums, planetariums, zoos, botanical gardens, and natural history and children’s museums, as well as companies, consultants, and other organizations that share an interest in informal science education. Learn more about ASTC in this presentation.

Major programs and services provided by ASTC include:

  • Sponsoring the ASTC Annual Conference, the premier professional development gathering for the science center and museum field;
  • Convening dialogue, learning opportunities, and information exchange through Communities of Practice (CoPs) and other professional development programs and discussion forums;
  • Publishing Dimensions, the award-winning bimonthly magazine of the science center field, and INFORMER, a biweekly email newsletter;
  • Tracking and analyzing trends in the science center field;
  • Promoting international action on global science issues, and aiding in the development of science centers across the world;
  • Representing science center interests before the U.S. Congress and federal agencies;
  • Promoting equity and diversity by providing members with resources and tools to increase the number of individuals from underrepresented and/or underserved groups who visit and work in museums; and
  • Supporting and housing the Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE).

Equity and Diversity Initiative Mission
Our commitment to equity and diversity will be reflected in our collective efforts to create a dynamic process that helps ASTC members build an awareness and understanding of the needs and the promise of their communities, and subsequently, implement practices and policies that:

  • Ensure that boards and staff at every level reflect, welcome, celebrate, and benefit from diversity
  • Develop exhibits, programs, and print materials that reflect, welcome, celebrate, and benefit from the diverse communities currently and potentially served by ASTC members
  • Work in partnership with diverse constituents (visitors, funders, contractors, supporters, etc.) to identify ways to meet their needs, and
  • Engage in dialogues that examine issues of diversity and equity with a proactive commitment to fundamental human rights.

To learn more about ASTC and its role in supporting science centers and the STEM field, please download our brochure below.

ASTC Brochure: Advancing Science and STEM Learning

Contact us at:
Association of Science and Technology Centers
818 Connecticut Avenue, NW
7th Floor
Washington, DC 20006-2734 USA
(202) 783-7200