Developing countries are increasingly recognising the importance of science in developing their economies, and the challenges that entails.
Displaying 21-40 of 100 key documents
Source: UNEP | February 2012
This report describes trends in the use of key resources such as water, food and biodiversity in Asia and the Pacific, and what this means for economies. It was produced by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, the Asian Development Bank and the UN Environment Programme.
The report highlights how policy has changed over the past few years, driven by rising demand for resources and by climate change, and presents data on patterns of resource-intensive growth in the region. It outlines key policy actions for sustainable economic growth; and recommends strategies to improve the resilience of societies and economies, including changes in governance. The final section highlights the report's implications for the two themes of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20).
Source: UNESCO/IOC | November 2011
This report, produced by several UN agencies and programmes, presents tangible recommendations to prioritise and improve the management of the ocean ahead of the Rio+20 conference in June. It aims to provide context for discussions to take place at the conference, and to ensure that ocean and coastal management strategies are incorporated in the new sustainable development approaches that will emerge from Rio+20.
They include plans to mitigate and adapt to ocean acidification; create a 'blue carbon' market for carbon dioxide captured in the ocean; establish institutional mechanisms for protecting habitats and biodiversity not covered by national regulations; adopt a plan to help small island developing states transition towards a green economy; and improve the governance of ocean resources.
The report suggests that there is a strong case for the UN to lead by encouraging improved dialogue, coordination and cooperation among UN agencies, funds and programmes. This could lead to a proposal for a new mechanism for ocean coordination to be put forward at Rio+20.
Source: European Mediterranean Sea Acidification in a changing climate (MedSeA) | November 2011
This report explains how acidification, warming and de-oxygenation are affecting the oceans, and encourages policymakers to mitigate these stressors and prepare appropriate policy statements ahead of Rio+20. It was written with the aim of raising awareness of ocean issues at the COP17 in Durban, South Africa.
The report provides definitions of ocean acidification, warming and de-oxygenation. It includes a guide to ocean impacts predicted to occur this century unless greenhouse gas emissions are substantially reduced, and how these impacts will, in turn, affect the climate via feedback mechanisms. It also outlines recommendations for mitigation, adaptation and research to improve understanding of these stressors.
Source: World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) | November 2011
This report provides an analysis of global innovation and intellectual property (IP) trends in 2011, and examines how innovation has changed. It also reviews how IP protection affects innovative behaviour, and what that implies for policymaking.
In four chapters, the report reviews trends in innovation and IP; the economics of IP; balancing collaboration and competition; and the role of IP in harnessing research for innovation. Each chapter concludes with recommendations for future research. The report examines questions that include the notion that innovation processes are increasingly open, international and collaborative; the drivers of increased demand for IP rights; and the rising importance of technology or knowledge markets.
It concludes by suggesting ways that IP and innovation policies can be redesigned to adapt to the growing demand for IP protection. It states that IP is playing an increasingly important role in innovation policies, and that moving beyond polarised debates will require fact-based research as well as translating economic research into accessible messages.
Source: Global Economy and Development at Brookings | January 2012
This report gives an overview of education challenges facing the developing world and discusses the technologies available to address them. It aims to provide guidance to decision-makers designing, implementing or investing in education initiatives.
The report focuses on the potential of recent information and communications technology (ICT) such as mobile phone and laptops, and examines conditions that can influence whether technology interventions are successful. It also focuses on the world's poorest countries.
The authors put forward seven principles for effective use of technology in education, which include a focus on identifying the problem before introducing a technology to address it, and considering whether the design and implementation of the technology will allow it to last over time. The report concludes that ICTs can bring quality learning to some of the world's poorest and hard-to-reach communities.
Source: The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
This report, published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, examines the role of renewable energy sources and technologies in the mitigation of climate change and provides policy relevant information. The authors evaluate the scientific literature on six renewable energy sources — bioenergy, direct solar energy, geothermal energy, hydropower, ocean energy and wind energy — and their current deployment. The report describes how each of these power sources can be integrated into future energy systems, and outlines future research needs in the context of sustainable development. It puts forward strategies to overcome environmental and social consequences associated with the deployment of such technologies, and compares the cost of energy from renewable sources to non-renewable sources.
Source: OECD | April 2011
This report identifies good practices and potential concrete steps forward to help scientists and administrators involved in collaborative research programmes between developing and developed countries. It describes issues that must be considered when designing, implementing and managing such projects. The report distils information and analyses that emerged from the Global Science Forum project, which addresses issues such as achieving a balance between research goals and strategic development priorities, developing national capacity in science and technology, and using appropriate indicators to evaluate the outcomes of collaborative programmes. The report concludes by emphasising that international collaboration is essential to deal with global issues such as climate change because developing countries are often those most severely affected by global threats.
Source: Working Group on Clinical Trials and Regulatory Pathways | November 2011
This report provides policy recommendations to help deliver safer and cheaper medical products to people suffering from neglected diseases in developing countries, where they are needed the most.
Although more drugs and vaccines are reaching late-stage clinical development, says the report, they are held back by a lack of funding to support clinical trials, as well as clinical research and regulatory capacity in settings where neglected diseases are endemic. This undermines safety and the validity of clinical data.
The report recommends a two-pronged approach to improving the quality and regulation of clinical trials in the developing world: establishing regional regulatory pathways for the oversight of clinical trials, and building quality and cost-efficiency into trial design and implementation. It also recommends practical steps that can be taken by donors, drug and vaccine developers, and regulatory authorities to begin implementing the changes.
Source: UK Collaborative on Development Sciences (UKCDS) | August 2011
This report assesses the relevance and applications of 'complexity science' — a term that encompasses inter-relationships between different disciplines and objectives in international development projects. It provides a definition, gives examples of actual and potential applications, and identifies future possibilities and challenges.
The report focuses on how to apply the methodologies of complexity science — such as nonlinear dynamics, stochastic processes, agent-based models and machine learning — to study complex systems such as climate change and economic forecasts. It examines several areas of complexity science in detail, showing how they are likely to be beneficial for a range of international development scenarios, and offers an example of success in the automated use of data to improve the rate of correctly classifying soybean disease. It concludes that increasing the availability of data will make complexity science increasingly important, raising questions about how to best use this data and improve their availability and reliability.
Source: The International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRU) | September 2011
This report presents 17 case studies of good practice in coastal management across island territories of the Asia-Pacific region. These illustrate examples of locally tailored, evidence-based and cost-effective actions at a local, provincial, national and regional level.
For each case study — including efforts in the Cook Islands, Fiji and the Solomon Islands — the report provides background information, intended outcomes and how they were addressed, what was achieved and lessons learned.
The report concludes that communities in the region can make progress with integrated coastal management to deal with primarily land-based threats facing coastal areas. It highlights the importance of enhancing the role of government and strengthening enabling environments; multi-sector partnerships; scaling-up small initiatives and achieving cost effectiveness; and providing information through education, awareness, monitoring or research.
Source: Climate Change Adaptation and Development Initiative (CC DARE), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
This paper suggests that research-based, small-scale interventions that help farming systems adapt to climate change can guide progress towards achieving food security and addressing the food crisis in the Horn of Africa.
It outlines lessons learnt from the Climate Change Adaptation and Development Programme jointly implemented by the UN Environment Programme and the UN Development Programme for Sub-Saharan Africa.
The authors argue for a shift away from top-down, corporate approaches to agricultural research and practice, in favour of a democratic approach that involves giving more decision-making power to local people, including farmers and indigenous people. Small-scale initiatives reduce tillage, protect the soil surface and alternate cereal crops with legumes that enrich the soil.
The paper suggests that communicating food security solutions to the public can help balance vested interests and level the field in favour of small producers. Managed effectively, the current drought in the Horn of Africa offers a window of opportunity to re-establish food security as a global priority.
Source: World Agroforestry Centre | April 2011
This report synthesises the results of a review of 104 studies on gender and the adoption of agroforestry in Africa, and aims to identify strategies that challenge gender imbalances in development initiatives. It explores women's participation in agroforestry, including their ability to manage agroforestry practices, access to agroforestry information, and how they benefit from agroforestry.
The results highlight the substantial benefits that agroforestry can offer to rural women in Africa, mainly because it requires fewer resources than alternative enterprises. But women's participation is low, with limited access to information and markets, and a mixed record of successful management of agroforestry technologies.
The report provides several technological, policy and institutional recommendations for improving the efficiency of women's participation in agroforestry. They include domesticating important tree species, and ensuring that women have access to market information and microfinance. The report concludes by suggesting further research in areas such as measuring the income that women generate from agroforestry, and identifying the key ingredients of success stories across Africa.
Source: The International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI) The Earth Institute at Columbia University | 2011
This report highlights advances in the use of climate information to predict and prepare for climate-related natural disasters. It draws together 17 case studies that capture the current state of knowledge within the humanitarian community, and identifies research innovations. It presents the challenges and opportunities that disaster risk managers face in using climate science with a three step approach: indentifying the problem, developing tools, and taking action.
The results show that effective partnerships are crucial and can help to build the information needed for effective response. They also suggest how the use of this information can be improved — for example by focusing on immediate opportunities for action in countries and regions more likely to benefit. Recommendations also include developing realistic expectations, in order to maintain trust in the information and those who provide it, and encouraging national meteorological services to tailor their information to the problem at hand.
Source: UNESCO | 2007
This technical report provides policymakers with a framework for action to address the underlying causes for the science and technology (S&T) gender gap, and aims to promote discussion about gender in the scientific and academic communities.
The report provides an overview of S&T for development and discusses how gender can be incorporated into S&T education, research and policy. It incorporates empirical data and research contributed by institutions involved in science, technology and gender studies and policy around the world. It highlights the need to increase women's participation in S&T research, foster awareness about science, technology and gender among the general public, and collect more data for research.
The full report is available in English but Arabic, Chinese, Spanish and Russian versions are being prepared. An executive summary is available in English, French, Arabic and Chinese. It is the first of several planned thematic reports to be produced by the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
Source: National Advisory Council for Innovation, South Africa (2009) | 2009
This report presents gender-differentiated statistical data on higher education student enrolments and graduations, human resources for science and technology (S&T), publication output, funding allocation, and scientific ratings given to individual researchers by the National Research Foundation (NRF).
The study finds that South African women's participation in science education has increased, and gender parity in funding for higher education and research has improved, even in the fields of engineering and applied technologies. But women are still a minority, particularly at higher postgraduate levels, and remain behind their male counterparts in access to S&T employment, scientific publications, and NRF ratings. The report recommends action such as promoting research on 'gender responsiveness' and tackling the unequal distribution of public resources.
Source: UNESCO Office Jakarta and Regional Bureau for Science in Asia and the Pacific (2004) | 2004
This study evaluates the extent to which gender perspectives have been integrated into science and technology policy in six Asian countries: China, India, Indonesia, Republic of Korea, the Philippines, and Vietnam. It aims to assess the existing level of support for the integration of gender perspectives into national and regional policy, and to identify steps that could be taken in that direction.
The paper outlines each country's situation on science, technology and gender (STG) using statistical data and information about existing laws and policies related to gender, government programmes, key institutions and current STG problems.
A comparison of the findings suggests differences in the legal and policy frameworks that countries use to ensure gender equality in science and technology (S&T). The study recommends addressing regional concerns by prioritising the collection of S&T data by gender, for example, and ensuring that the scientific community is committed to gender equality.
Source: Stockholm Environment Institute | February 2011
This report introduces the Climate and Regional Economics of Development (CRED) model — a climate vulnerability index that estimates the economic damage from climate change in nine world regions based on three measures: freshwater resources per capita, the share of population living in coastal areas, and the percentage of gross domestic product (GDP) of climate-sensitive economic sectors.
The report reviews the current literature of climate change vulnerability indices and describes the CRED climate model, including the data sources and methods used to create the index. It presents the results by region and compares them with the results of other indices. It concludes that although other indices contain more variables that produce more detailed results, they are more difficult to interpret. CRED indicators are quantifiable, can be updated when new information becomes available, and inform climate change policy by identifying regions and countries where intervention to prevent damages is crucial.
Source: Economic Commission for Africa | 2010
This report assesses how much African countries are benefiting from and participating in the global technology market. This is based on trends in technology transfer and a comparison between flows of technology between various regions of the world and among African countries between 1990 and 2008. The report recommends simple steps that African countries can take to speed up the uptake and use of foreign technologies without stretching their budgets or changing their institutions.
Source: Meridian Institute | January 2005
This report, published by the Meridian Institute describes the growing interest of developing countries including Brazil, China, India and South Africa, in nanotechnology. The ways nanotechnology applications could solve health, sanitation, and pollution problems and provide faster, cheaper information and communication technology are outlined. The challenges of using and developing nanotechnology for and in developing nations including the roles and responsibilities of different stakeholders are also discussed.
The Meridian Institute says nanotechnology can play a role in achieving the UN Millennium Development Goals. As a result, rich nations should dedicate a reasonable portion of their overseas development assistance to nanotechnology.
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Source: Japan Council for Science and Technology Policy | May 2008
This report, written by Japan's Council for Science and Technology Policy, provides recommendations to Japanese ministries for promoting science and technology diplomacy. Suggestions include pursuing research collaborations with developing countries and boosting capacity building efforts in these nations, fostering young researchers and engaging with global collaborative science projects.