Stimulating Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Development in Africa: An Urgent Post-2015 Agenda

A knowledge-based economy is expected to drive sustainable social-economic transformation and underpin the creation of employment opportunities, especially for a bulging youth generation. Africa requires a boost in attention to and development of STI to urgently address challenges posed by climate change, desertification and land degradation, drought, loss of biodiversity and sustainable natural resource management. 

As the UN prepares to adopt a post-2015 development agenda, a Common African Position (CAP) has been published in 2014. The CAP recognizes rising trends such as population growth and the youth bulge, urbanization, climate change and inequalities. It reiterates the importance of prioritizing structural transformation for inclusive and people-centered development in Africa. According to the document, such a development approach requires the advancement and enhancement of adequate policy space and productive capacities, notably through infrastructure, science, technology development, transfer and innovation. CAP positions STI as the second of its six pillars and commits to:

  • Enhancing technological capacities for Africa’s transformative agenda,
  • Building enabling environment for innovation,
  • Increasing support for research and development, and
  • Optimal utilization of space and geospatial technologies.