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Daily CSR

Daily CSR
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UN Report announces - Access to Science and Technology is key post 2015


As per a group of international scientists who report to the UN Secretary General, access to science and technology post 2015 will bridge the gap between developed and developing nations. Science and technology will be the catalysts for better sustainable development projects.

A group of international scientists who have been designated as advisors to the Ban Ki-Moon, the U.N’s Secretary General, have conveyed a very simple and yet powerful message: science and technology could be “the game changer” in future projects undertaken by the U.N
As per a newly released report, increased developments and introduction of science and technology is reducing the gap between a developed and a developing country.
“If countries wish to break the poverty cycle and achieve (post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals), they will have to set up ambitious national minimum target investments for STI, including special allotments for the promotion of basic science and science education and literacy.”
“[These investments] can contribute to alleviating poverty, creating jobs, reducing inequalities, increasing income and enhancing health and well-being.”
The report also mentions that along with these it will also aid in finding solutions to critical problems such as food and water security, energy security, biodiversity management, and help mitigate the effects of climate change.
Specific areas which could do with some investments have been pointed out by the Board. These include, “novel alternative energy solutions, water filters that remove pathogens at the point-of-use, new robust building materials from locally available materials, nanotechnology for health and agriculture, and biological approaches to industrial production, environmental remediation and management.”
In fact, as per Dr Salvatore Arico, a team leader and a senior program specialist of Science-Policy Interface and Assessments Division of Science Policy and Capacity Building Natural Sciences Sector at UNESCO, STI can be considered almost the foundation on which rests the four main elements of development post 2015, which are, SDGs/Targets/indicators, Accountability Frameworks for monitoring & evaluation – in different degrees and in relation to specific systems and sectors, declaration and means of Implementation.
Of the proposed 17 SDGs, STI will be key in providing the basis for data gathering and analyses; its findings will act like a knowledge base.
A key recommendation of the Board is the call for the publication of an annual Global Sustainable Development Report (GSDR) which will not only monitor, identify bottleneck and do a root cause analyses, but also offer potential ways out of the challenges.
The GSDR could act as a platform which integrates and synthesizes findings from a wide variety of institutions and scientific fields so as to develop and create a strong inter-dependent support structures between U.N Agencies so that they could all work together in harmony
“This would require resources and a great level of U.N. inter-agency coordination,” said Dr Arico.
The Board also called for a dedicated platform for science at the world level which will create, promote and monitor all issues of sustainable development. It could be called the U.N. High Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development as science has to be formally engaged “in the HLPF as an advisor rather than an observer.”
To quote the Board’s report, “This could be accomplished by creating a formal seat for science on the HLPF, and/or by involving the Scientific Advisory Board and organisations such as the National Academies of Sciences, UNESCO, International Council for Science (ICSU), Future Earth, regional scientific bodies, and others.”