year, World Science Day for Peace and Development provides an opportunity
for special attention to be paid to the contribution of science
to achieving sustainable development and enhancing the prospects
for peace. From agricultural production to medicine, from sustainable
energy to water management, scientific and technological advances
play a key role in social and economic development through a diverse
range of applications.
the importance of science does not rest solely upon the value of
research and knowledge in their own terms but also derives from
their relevance to the needs of society and their effectiveness
in addressing those needs and in meeting the macroeconomic objectives
of government. This is a challenge at national and international
the basic aims of science have not altered, social needs have changed
considerably. Nowadays, science has to address complex challenges
that are global in scale and character. It must deal with enormous
and difficult problems that can only be met by joint efforts. In
its essence, science is a collective enterprise, one whose advances
generally owe more to the dedicated and painstaking efforts of teams
than to breakthroughs generated by outstanding individuals. Cooperation
is at the heart of scientific endeavour.
year on World Science Day for Peace and Development, I would like
to focus on the crucial importance of South-South cooperation in
science and technology. Such cooperation is perhaps more important
now than ever before and therefore deserves further support and
encouragement. South-South cooperation holds out the promise and
possibility of creating a critical mass of highly qualified and
innovative scientists and technologists in the South who are trained
to address issues of critical importance to the people living there.
Through research and training exchanges, institutional linkages
and networking, South-South cooperation can help to develop a professional
culture of scientific excellence among scientists who remain at
home where their contributions are most needed.
South-South cooperation in science and technology provides valuable
opportunities to promote development and peace. The development
experiences of the South are rich and diverse. Whether through commonalities
in history and geography or through similar development challenges,
the countries of the South have important lessons to share concerning
the difficulties they have faced and the success they have achieved.
Scientific dialogue and collaboration, moreover, are vital mechanisms
for building reciprocal interests and mutual understanding between
peoples. UNESCO has long seen the value of promoting the cause of
peace through international cooperation in science and South-South
cooperation has been and continues to be an important aspect of
UNESCOs promotion and use of modalities of South-South cooperation
figure within the UNITWIN/UNESCO Chairs programme, for example.
Moreover, reliance upon South-South as well as North-South cooperation
is built into the very conception of UNESCOs International
Basic Sciences Programme (IBSP), which is focused on capacity-building
in science and on the transfer and sharing of scientific information
World Science Day for Peace and Development 2005, UNESCO calls upon
all those involved in the scientific enterprise to re-affirm their
commitment to building a peaceful, prosperous and equitable world
through science and to express this commitment through international
cooperation and collaborative action. Through South-South cooperation
in particular, let scientists develop relations of solidarity and
mutual support that generate practical benefits and also serve as
models for others to follow.