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Strengthening African Science

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12.06.2018

URBANA, ILLINOIS – In late March, Africa’s leading scientists, innovators, and policymakers met in Kigali, Rwanda, to brainstorm solutions to an increasingly pressing problem: the low quality of science on the continent.

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Any good leader knows that scientific discovery and innovation fuels progress, facilitates development, and can help tackle issues like food insecurity, water shortages, and climate change. And yet most African governments are failing to fund research and development adequately in their countries. According to the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, countries in Sub-Saharan Africa spend, on average, just 0.5% of GDP on research and development. In the West, the share is closer to 3%.

This disparity underscores the development challenges that Africans face. Africa is home to 15% of the world’s population and 5% of its GDP, but........

© Project Syndicate