Science and Technology for Development: The Institutional Landscape in Africa and Europe
This report provides an overview of the European and African institutional terrain and policy frameworks of S&T and development cooperation, i.e. the EU’s Framework Programmes (FPs) and the European Development Fund (EDF), as well as initiatives under the auspices of the African Union (AU) and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). The report details the elements of the FPs and the African Consolidated Plan of Action (CPA), as well as the EDF and the Cotonou Agreement. Africa’s participation is FPs is very limited. In the age of globalisation African countries are afflicted by the digital and economic divides between developed and developing economies that exacerbate their predicament. While most African countries have established Councils or Commissions of Science and Technology only a few have developed and implemented comprehensive national S&T policies. Africa’s STI systems remain fragmented and are overstretched owing to limited financial and human resources. There is a plethora of policies and instruments related to S&T and development issues. But there has not been consistent alignment and little synergy between the objectives of EDF programmes for Africa, and the opportunities for African participation in successive FPs. Consequently, very few national or regional activities funded by the EDF have a specific science and technology capacity-building orientation. Science and technology projects have not been optimally integrated within the broader thematic development cooperation activities. What is needed is the integration of those policies and actions into a coherent whole. A long overdue ‘marriage’ between S&T and development is called for. The 8th Partnership on Science, Information Society and Space under the Joint Africa-EU Strategy and its attendant ‘Lighthouse Projects’ offer new prospects for collaborative efforts. The report also contains two illustrative case studies, one on Tanzania and one on the East African Community (EAC).
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