The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences wishes to make a tangible contribution to boosting the role of science and scholarship in developing African nations.
For several years now, it has collaborated with the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC) on capacity-building in Africa. The Academy has assisted NASAC in drafting a Strategic Action Agenda. It is now helping NASAC tackle the topics on this important agenda.
In their collaboration, the Academy and NASAC have focused on the following activities and concerns:
- Conference/workshop on food security entitled ‘Impact of and Adaptation to Climate Change in Relation to Food Security in Africa’ (pdf) (location: Nairobi, Kenya, 23-25 February 2011).
- A second conference was held in Mauritius focusing on the theme 'Water management issues in Africa' (location: Réduit, Mauritius, 28-31 March 2012). Germany’s Leopoldina Academy was involved in organising this conference. The conference findings and recommendations (Conference proceedings, pdf) will be submitted to African and global policymakers.
- At the request of the French and Swiss science academies, the Royal Netherlands Academy contributed to a communication training course (26-28 January 2012) in Paris for the staff of African academies. The purpose was to assist in institutional and operational capacity-building.
- The most recent conference/workshop (Consultative Forum on Open Access) in January 2015 focused on open access, a topic that is naturally crucial to developing countries and in which the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science aims to play a pioneering role internationally.