Without advanced competencies in science and technology, no country, or region of the world is able to access the full power of–much less participate in creating–scientific research and technological tools to solve the many internal and trans-border health, energy, development and quality-of-life challenges confronting our globalized society. Furthermore, without advanced science and tech competencies, citizens of technologically underdeveloped countries are not able to develop an economically productive and independent middle class. To that end, the world is witnessing an increasing shift of development priorities towards greater emphasis and investments in higher education systems, STEM infrastructures, indigenous and industrial research and development capabilities.
The NEF encourages integration of scientific and technological research and policies in African countries by advancing policy dialogues and mechanisms towards these goals. The NEF Policy work includes tracking outcomes of the NEF Global Gathering Declarations, biannual NEF Ministerial Meetings with focus on increasing Africa’s scientific capacity and NEF Roundtables that bring together key stakeholders to study critical areas (energy, health, fintech, climate smart agriculture etc.) and produce opinion papers and/or roadmaps.