ADEA advocates for improved MSE

The Second Science, Technology and Innovation Forum was officially opened on September 15, 2014 by Lahcen Daoudi, Morocco’s Minister of Higher Education, Scientific Research and Executive Training. In his opening address, Mr. Daoudi laid the emphasis on research, which must focus on the needs of Africa.

His address was followed by speeches by Yacine Fal, the resident representative of the AfDB in Morocco; Christina Harttila, the Ambassadress of Finland to Morocco; Martial De-Paul Ikounga, the African Union’s Commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology; Oley Dibba-Wadda, ADEA Executive Secretary; Amina Al-Hajri, Deputy Director-General of ISESCO; and Getachew Engida, Deputy Director-General of UNESCO.

ADEA’s Executive Secretary  emphasized the need to reinforce the foundations for the development of STI, particularly the teaching and learning of mathematics, science and technology at all educational levels. She also stressed that progress needs to be made in encouraging girls to participate and succeed in these subjects. Mr. Ikounga deplored the weakness of current STI systems and networks, which explain among other things the difficulties experienced by African countries in controlling the current Ebola pandemic. Ms. Harttila spoke of the support provided by Finland for the development of STI in Africa, as well as the priority that her country gives to education. Ms. Fal, Ms. Al-Hajri and Mr. Engida focused on the programs and initiatives of the AfDB, ISESCO and UNESCO in the areas of STI and human capital development.

The Forum continues today and tomorrow with workshops and round-table discussions on various topics: water management, energy and green growth, agriculture and food security, pharmaceutics, women’s participation in the sciences, intellectual property, promoting entrepreneurship, preserving natural resources, technical and vocational skills development, health, skills for extractive industries, the role of African Diaspora in promoting STI, and Africa’s vision and agenda for STI.

Read ADEA Executive Secretary’s speech

For more information on the Forum, consult the Forum web site at www.2ndSTIforum