Policy Support Facility

Strengthening instruments for policy implementation in science, technology and innovation: STI Forum side-event.

On the margins of the 9th Multi-stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals (STI Forum 2024), the Research and Innovation Programme (R&I) of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) Secretariat, UNESCO, and the UN Interagency Task Team on Capacity-building in Science, Technology, and Innovation for the SDGs (IATT-WS6) hosted an online side-event on May 10, 2024. The event focused on interventions and tools to strengthen policy implementation in science, technology, and innovation (STI).

Attended by 143 participants from ministries of science, technology, and innovation, academic institutions, UN agencies, non-governmental organisations, and various other agencies worldwide, the event underscored the critical role of R&I in national development. It highlighted the necessity for robust policy frameworks to support innovation and scientific progress.

The event was inaugurated by Dr. Norbert Richard Ibrahim, Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs & Human Development at the OACPS Secretariat, and Ana Peršić, Programme Specialist in the Science, Technology and Innovation Policy Section at UNESCO.

Key Publication and Findings: The side event served as a platform to disseminate findings from case studies and insights from two significant publications:

  1. OACPS Handbook on how to formulate and implement effective Research and Innovation (R&I) policies.
  2. UNESCO Science, Technology and Innovation Policy Instruments for the Sustainable Development Goals: A Global Outlook.

 Science, technology, and innovation policies are vital for guiding countries to harness the transformative potential of scientific and technological advancements to address global challenges. However, the development and implementation of these policies are challenging due to institutional fragmentation, lack of coordination, inadequate monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, and limited information on suitable policy instruments, among other factors.

To assist countries in overcoming these challenges, the OACPS R&I Programme developed a comprehensive handbook. This handbook resulted from a Mutual Learning Exercise (MLE) within the framework of the Policy Support Facility (PSF) of the OACPS R&I Programme, involving representatives from over 15 countries who exchanged knowledge on formulating and implementing R&I policies.

Expert Insights and National Experiences: Representatives from the OACPS Secretariat, UNESCO, IATT-WS6 entities, and various country officials shared their experiences in designing and implementing STI policy instruments for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The OACPS Handbook was presented by Mr. Chux Daniels, the main author, followed by interventions from:

  • Amina Djoulde Christelle, Head of Scientific and Technical Cooperation Division, Ministry of Scientific Research and Innovation of Cameroon
  • Mucktarr Darboe MY, Deputy Permanent Secretary-Technical, Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology, The Gambia
  • Ahmed Elmouna, Senior Advisor to the Minister of Higher Education, Scientific Research, and Information and Communication Technologies of Mauritania

These speakers highlighted how their countries have utilised the handbook to improve and implement national STI policies and the value of exchanging knowledge among countries facing similar challenges.

Complementary Publications: Another key publication presented was the UNESCO Science, Technology and Innovation Policy Instruments for the Sustainable Development Goals: A Global Outlook. This report analyses the global landscape of STI policy instruments, revealing trends in themes, support mechanisms, funding resources, and linkages to the SDGs. Notable speakers, such as Fernando Santiago, Industrial Policy Officer at UNIDO and Member of the UN IATT-WS6, Marian Dorcas Quain, Deputy Director General of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) of Ghana, and Catalina Terra Rosas, Chief of Advisors at the Undersecretariat of Science, Technology, Knowledge and Innovation, Ministry of Science, Technology, Knowledge and Innovation, Government of Chile, commented on the publication’s value.

Closing Remarks: In his closing remarks, Dimo Calovski, Staff Economist, Science, Technology and Innovation Section of UNCTAD and Co-coordinator of the UN IATT-WS6, acknowledged the side event as a prime example of international collaboration involving UN entities, other agencies, and beneficiaries in sharing knowledge and information on STI policy and instruments.

Download the OACPS Handbook to learn more about formulating and implementing effective R&I policies.

Click here to learn more about the OACPS R&I Policy Support Facility.

 More information