The European Science Foundation (ESF), the International Council for Science (ICSU) and the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC), together with the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Royal Society, The British Academy, the Académie des Sciences and the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, are joining forces for an unprecedented series of research conferences to promote excellence and research collaboration between Europe and Africa in basic science.
The Europe-Africa Frontier Research Conference Series will focus on basic sciences, thus promoting research and cooperation in a field that often finds it hard to attract adequate attention - and funding. It is exactly this focus on basic sciences that makes the series unique, says John Marks, Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Science and Strategy at ESF: "most conferences involving African scientists address more immediately applicable science. Yet progress in Africa depends on its position in basic science as well."Each conference will focus on a jointly selected topic that is of key significance to the present and future development in Africa, Europe and beyond. The series will highlight the excellence of European and African research in the field and foster collaboration between scientists.
Each conference will be co-chaired by two highly renowned scientists - one from Africa and one from Europe. The conference location will alternate between the two continents. "Bringing together European and African scientists is mutually beneficial both in terms of advancing the science and ensuring that it addresses the real issues that are affecting people's everyday lives," says Carthage Smith, ICSU's Deputy Executive Director.
ESF and its partners expect this new series to further knowledge exchange and create new synergies, such as intercontinental research projects and joint funding applications. "The most important outcome is to sow the seeds for long-term research collaborations between African and European scientists that eventually lead to applications that are beneficial to citizens on both continents," says Smith.
The first conference: Focusing on neglected diseases
The first conference will take place in South Africa in spring 2009 and cover topics surrounding infectious diseases. The event will concentrate on studying the basic mechanisms - cellular, molecular and genetic - which underlie infectious diseases and explore how understanding these mechanisms can be applied to drug development and other intervention strategies.
Amongst others, tuberculosis, malaria, the 'neglected tropical diseases' Buruli ulcer, leishmaniasis, schistosomiasis and filariasis, along with West Nile, Rift Valley and chikungunya viruses will be discussed. Despite public attention now extensively focusing on other health issues such as HIV AIDS, these diseases still remain a key concern, not only limited to the African continent: "The world is now a "global village" and almost every issue that concerns Africa, concerns or affects the developed world, and vice versa. For this reason, even infectious diseases have direct impact on Europe, Africa and the rest of the world," says Jackie Olang, NASAC programme officer, on behalf of the NASAC secretariat.
The conference will be co-chaired by Prof. Dr. Monique Capron, Inserm, Lille University, Institut Pasteur de Lille, France, and Prof. Dr. M. Iqbal Parker, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Cape Town University, South Africa.Scientists from academia and industry worldwide will be invited to apply through the ESF website (www.esf.org/conferences/) Selection will be based on academic merit, but the organisers will strive to create a balance between African and European participants, with a special focus on young researchers. There is a possibility to apply for travel and conference grants.
For the photo of the two chairs: http://www.esf.org/ext-ceo-news-singleview/article/esf-conferences-to-cooperate-with-africa-424.html
Thomas Lau | alfa
#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017
14.10.2016 | GESIS - Leibniz-Institut für Sozialwissenschaften
Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus
14.10.2016 | Leibniz-Institut für Agrarentwicklung in Transformationsökonomien (IAMO)
Physicists from the University of Würzburg have designed a light source that emits photon pairs. Two-photon sources are particularly well suited for tap-proof data encryption. The experiment's key ingredients: a semiconductor crystal and some sticky tape.
So-called monolayers are at the heart of the research activities. These "super materials" (as the prestigious science magazine "Nature" puts it) have been...
Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.
This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...
Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion
Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
28.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering
28.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy
28.10.2016 | Life Sciences