4th Africa-Europe Science Collaboration Forum, Brussels, 22-24 April 2024
4th Africa-Europe Science Collaboration Forum
Brussels, 22-24 April 2024
The 4th AERAP Africa-Europe Science Collaboration Forum, set to take place from April 22 to 24, 2024, embodies the spirit of the European Union’s Science and Development agendas and the collaborative ethos of the Team Europe initiative. This Forum is poised to serve as a dynamic platform, emphasising the critical role of science and digital innovation in shaping EU policies towards Africa and placing African scientific leadership at the centre of these, mirroring the synergistic approach that Team Europe champions. By fostering deeper engagements with policymakers and amplifying the impacts of scientific endeavours, the Forum seeks to enhance the inclusion of African stakeholders with European counterparts through strategic collaborations in science and innovation.
The Forum’s core objective is leveraging digital technologies to extend the scope of scientific collaboration and ensure inclusive participation across Africa. The agenda includes discussions on significant policy frameworks and strategic plans, such as the AU-EU Innovation Agenda, the AUC Digital Transformation Strategy for Africa (2020-2030), the EU Comprehensive Strategy with Africa, and key programmes and instruments, including Horizon Europe, FP10 and the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (NDICI). These dialogues aim to bolster sustainable development, healthcare, biodiversity, and digital advancements, resonating with the collaborative and unified approach foundational to Team Europe.
The Forum’s alignment with the broader EU Development Agenda underscores a commitment to sustainable and inclusive growth in Africa, in line with global development goals and the UN SDGs. It will explore a wide array of topics, from Astronomy to ICT and Environmental Sustainability, emphasising the intersection of science, education, and digital innovation funding. This comprehensive coverage will facilitate crucial policy insights, enhancing the Forum’s contribution to the Africa-EU partnership.
Moreover, the Forum will delve into the implications of new regulatory measures in areas like AI, data protection and medical device governance, reflecting on their impact on Africa’s scientific landscape and collaborative ventures with the EU. By integrating viewpoints from global organisations such as the UN and OECD, the Forum aims to provide a holistic perspective on these matters, ensuring alignment with the global development agenda and reinforcing the EU’s commitment to working collaboratively for greater impact and effectiveness in international cooperation and development.
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About AERAP Science
The Africa-Europe Science Collaboration and Innovation Platform (AERAP) is a stakeholder forum convened to define priorities for science and innovation cooperation between Africa and Europe. It provides a framework for stakeholders from industry and academia to define research action plans across a wide range of technological areas that will be essential for addressing common challenges and the future. This framework will enable major research and technological advances that will drive socioeconomic development and competitiveness in Africa and Europe.
AERAP is structured around a network of key stakeholders who meet regularly to develop and update agendas for radio astronomy cooperation. These agendas are developed through dialogue with industry, research institutes and the public sector from across EU Member States and African nations and aim to better align priorities across a range of scientific themes with those of researchers and industry representatives.
The overall goals of the platform are to strengthen research and innovation in Europe and Africa, improve knowledge transfer and stimulate competitiveness across both continents.
AERAP responds to the European Parliament Written Declaration 45 on Science Capacity Building in Africa. This call was repeated by the Heads of State of the African Union through their Decision Assembly/AU/Dec.407 CXVIII. AERAP encourages policymakers to understand the need for an enabling policy and regulatory environment for science cooperation with Africa and championing leadership in Africa and Europe to demonstrate science’s contribution to society.