25.03.2013 - UNESCO Office in Brasilia

Recife to host regional preparatory meeting for the world Science Forum in April

Recife will be hosting the 5th regional preparatory meeting for the World Science Forum (WSF) on the 15th and 16th of April at the Northeast Regional Headquarters of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation in Cidade Universitária. The meeting is a lead up to the international event scheduled for November in Rio de Janeiro – it is the first time it will be held outside Europe.

Given the importance of the global forum, the national executive committee - comprised of 12 entities that make up the National Science, Technology and Innovation Network - decided to hold seven regional debates in different capital cities to discuss issues related to the major scientific challenges of the twenty-first century. Since August last year four meetings have been held in São Paulo, Belo Horizonte, Salvador and Manaus. The final two are planned for Porto Alegre, in May, and Brasilia in June.

In Recife, besides the four themes common to all the preparatory stages, – education in science; dissemination and access to knowledge and the interests of the community; ethics in science; and science for sustainable and inclusive development - the meeting will aim to address different combinations of the triad "oceans, climate and development", with an emphasis on identifying scientific contributions: to the understanding of phenomena; to the confronting and adapting to foreseen changes; and to the sustainable and inclusive development of communities prone to these.

For the Science and Technology Secretary of Pernambuco, Marcelino Granja, the theme is fitting given the understanding the scientific community and local government have of the need for greater investment in research on the ocean and its influence on climate. "So it can be managed sustainably and aid development," he argues. "The ocean influences climate and climate influences development. It's an important topic of universal interest", he adds.

Bringing depth to the discussion
International speakers, climate specialists and representatives of scientific and technological institutions from the Northeast and other parts of the country will be participating in the meeting. Granja considers this a strategic moment to bring depth to the discussion in the Northeast region, which is in a phase of strong growth, increasing social inclusion and greater participation in the field of science and technology.

"Our own research foundation [The Foundation for Science and Technology of Pernambuco - Facepe], for example, increased its investment capacity tenfold, from R$ 5 million to around $ 50 million annually from 2007 to 2012. This has been a radical advance for the science and technology scene in the state," he said.

"By the end of these meetings we hope to produce a document, a manifesto to be read at the forum itself in November," says the executive secretary of MCTI, Luiz Antonio Elias, who met with Secretary Marcelino Granja and representatives of scientific and technological institutions on the 7th to discuss the regional programming.

Source: Social Communications Office of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (Ascom do MCTI)

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