Work continues on the two IAP for Research projects, ‘Improving Global Policymaking for the SDGs’ and ‘Harnessing Science, Engineering, and Medicine to Address Africa’s Challenges’, which are exploring how the academies can contribute more effectively to global and regional policymaking, respectively.
Recognizing that most policy is implemented at the national level, the emphasis on both projects is to engage IAP members and regional networks, as well as national young academies and the Global Young Academy (GYA). Three pillars underpin both projects: (i) mobilizing academies to support UN (global) and African Union (Africa) policy frameworks through surveys and awareness-raising; (ii) building the capacity of academies through practical action and sharing experience; and (iii) fostering new partnerships with global and regional stakeholders, and looking at academies within wider systems of science policy advice / support.
Both project working groups have now planned their third meetings during which they will hear from local experts about how to build effective cooperation between researchers and governments to develop and implement October 2017 N o 48 3 evidence-based policies that support the SDGs.
Global policymaking (SDGs) project The SDGs working group will meet in Beijing, China, in early November and will be hosted by the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Since their last meeting in Paris in February, the working group has developed a publication, ‘Supporting the Sustainable Development Goals: A Short Guide for Science Academies’, which is intended to serve as a guide to the SDGs process and provide mapping of the UN landscape. A searchable online repository of SDGrelated reports that academies have published since 2014 is also being created and will be available in the coming weeks. Finally, the working group is developing webinars to familiarize interested stakeholders in a range of ongoing SDG-related activities.
Working group members have also participated in Executive Committee or Board meetings of the four IAP regional networks (IANAS, EASAC, NASAC and AASSA). The project is exploring the possibility of supporting regional workshops to engage interested academies of science, engineering and medicine, as well as young academies to discuss the imperative for academies and scientists to support the SDGs, focusing on those most pertinent to the region. The outcomes of these workshops will feed into the project’s final report. You can follow the project here.
Harnessing SEM in Africa project
The Africa project working group will meet in Abuja, Nigeria, following the Annual Meeting of African Science Academies (AMASA) in late November and will be hosted by the Nigerian Academy of Science. Following their February meeting in Addis Ababa, the working group divided into five subgroups and progress has been made within each. Similarly to the SDG guide mentioned above, a short guide to the African Union (AU) and Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy for Africa (STISA) 2024 is under development. A three-tiered approach for engaging the African diaspora has been agreed upon and an action plan will be developed in Abuja. Members of the subgroup on science leadership attended the Worldwide Meeting of Young Academies in July 2017 and are developing an action plan in follow-up to the feedback received during this meeting.
The small grants programme, which intends to (i) to stimulate regional cooperation of academies, senior and young, and (ii) develop new conversations and new partnerships with national, regional and pan-African bodies within the context of STISA 2024 and/or the UN SDGs has selected four winners out of 12 applications and the projects are now under way. Finally, representatives from the subgroup focused on building relations with the AU and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) attended the STISA 2024 Monitoring and Evaluation Committee meeting to gain a better understanding of where academies and their members can best contribute to the STISA 2024 process.
If you have any questions about either IAP project, then please get in touch with the project secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org.