The National Academy of Sciences of Sri Lanka (NASSL), with support from the InterAcademy Partnership and the Association of Academies and Societies of Sciences in Asia (AASSA), successfully organized the workshop on 'Institutionalizing Science Advice to Governments'. This event took place on 6-8 July 2023 in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The workshop concluded with the issuance of the 'Colombo Declaration'. This declaration emphasizes the urgency of establishing institutionalized science advice to governments, enabling scientific evidence to shape policies, and reinforcing the commitment of academies and partners to this endeavour. It also recommends expanding regional and global science advice networks to address common challenges in institutionalizing science advice.
The 'Colombo Declaration' represents a clarion call for governments to partner with science academies and other scientific organizations to bolster the process of science advice to government. The declaration also underscores the vital role of sound, comprehensive and independent scientific advice in effective policymaking. It draws attention to the uneven progress in institutionalizing science advice across nations, as evidenced by varying responses to the global COVID-19 pandemic. The declaration expresses deep concern that nations and their people are not optimally benefiting from scientific knowledge.
The signatories of this declaration include the National Academy of Sciences of Sri Lanka, the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, the Australian Academy of Science, the Bangladesh Academy of Sciences, the Korean Academy of Science and Technology, the National Academy of Science and Technology Philippines, the Nepal Academy of Science and Technology, and the Turkish Academy of Sciences.
The InterAcademy Partnership (IAP), of which NASSL is a member academy, played a consistent role in supporting and encouraging this initiative, highlighting the significance of international collaboration in advancing science advice to governments. This event will hopefully mark a significant stride towards strengthening evidence-based policymaking in the Asian region and beyond.
Read the full text of the 'Colombo Declaration' here.
For more information on the NASSL workshop, read here.