Science, Technology and Innovation Policy: The Role of Parliaments

Promoting dialogue between parliamentarians, scientists and the rest of society to foster better governance of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) systems 


Parliamentarians have a central role in enabling the governance and organization of STI in a way that is responsible and for the benefit of the whole of society. However, in order for parliamentarians to be able to take decisions for and deal with scientific and technological issues, they need to be provided with the necessary information to take well-informed decisions on these issues. As such, good governance of STI requires a holistic approach with the participation and inclusion of all members of society in the policy process.

UNESCO aims to mobilize the participation and engagement of all key stakeholders, including but not limited to decision makers, in science governance processes to foster better governance of STI and create sustainable societies. Covering the breadth of society, these stakeholders include women, youth, the media, academia, research institutes, public and private sector, and civil society. To this end, UNESCO organizes InterParliamentary Science and Technology (S&T) Policy Fora and the biennial World Science Forum, which includes a special parliamentary session each edition.

UNESCO also provides training for parliamentarians on STI legislative processes based on the specificity of the national parliamentary structures as well as on experiences of other Parliaments. 


The InterParliamentary S&T Policy Fora aim to:

  • Provide the S&T Parliamentary Committees with platforms for dialogue with scientists, the media, public and private sectors and civil society in developing national STI systems;
  • Identify good practices and building upon lessons learned from existing mechanisms for STI decision making;
  • Promote the development of participatory mechanisms and practice for governance of Science and Technology among stakeholders;
  • Exchange experiences of, and information on the STI policy-making process;
  • Strengthen the capacity of parliamentary science committees by drawing on best practice from national and regional parliamentary organizations that have a significant operational experience.

Previous InterParliamentary Fora on STI Policy

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