Issue 36

The newly elected IAP Executive Committee (EC) held its first meeting in Amsterdam on 23-24 March. It also met in a joint session with the Board of the InterAcademy Council (IAC). The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) hosted both events. What follows is a brief description of several significant decisions and events that have taken place since the last Bulletin was issued:

  • Our original name, IAP - the InterAcademy Panel on International Issues-  is being replaced by a new, more descriptive name - IAP: the global network of science academies. Please update your web links.
  • Following a careful review of a large number of nominations received from IAP members, a selection committee has chosen 60 top young scientists from 41 countries to participate in the 3rd IAP Young Scientists Conference. The conference will take place in conjunction with the World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting of the New Champions in Tianjin, China, 13-15 September 2010. For the first time, participants will have an opportunity to present posters to showcase their work. Several posters will be placed on public display in the Tianjin Convention Centre. This year's themes are "Building Successful Business-University Partnerships" and "Advancing Green Technologies for Sustainability."
  • In April, the InterAcademy Council (IAC) announced the appointment of a 12-person committee to evaluate the policies and procedures of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Committee members were chosen from more than 50 nominations submitted by IAC, IAP, and the International Council of Engineering and Technological Sciences (CAETS). The committee's findings will be issued in late August 2010. For additional information, see reviewipcc.interacademycouncil.net.
  • In May we asked IAP members and the regional networks to provide their views on the impact of the global economic crisis on education and research following some reflections we circulated on the debate. We hope you will take the time to reply.
  • Albert Koers has been appointed IAP's Interim Director. He assumed the position in April. We extend a warm welcome to Albert and look forward to working with him. We encourage you to contact Albert with your queries, comments and suggestions.

Howard Alper and Mohamed Hassan
IAP Co-Chairs

IAP Calendar 2010

  • 13-15 September 2010: IAP/World Economic Forum’s 3rd Young Scientists Conference, Tianjin, China.
  • 3-4 November 2010: EC Meeting, Santiago, Chile.

IAP programmes and projects:

Eleven projects have been awarded funding following an extensive review process of the proposals submitted in 2009 by IAP's member academies and regional networks. Issues to be explored include water research and management, the science-policy dialogue, science education, science communication, energy, young scientists and gender. The lead academies for these projects include IAP Members in Argentina, China, Chile, Cuba, Poland, Mexico, South Africa and US NAS; the lead regional networks are the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC) and the European Academies' Science Advisory Council (EASAC). Project summaries are available on the IAP website.

A report summarizing the outcome of the international workshop, "Promoting Education on Dual Use Issues in the Life Sciences", organized by the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw in conjunction with the US National Academy of Sciences, in November 2009, is available at: www.interacademies.net/CMS/Programmes/4702.aspx

The IAP project on Digital Knowledge Resources and Infrastructure in Developing Countries held its 3rd Steering Committee meeting in Montego Bay, Jamaica, 14-15 May 2010. The Caribbean Academy of Sciences organized the meeting. A report on the meeting is available at: www.interacademies.net/CMS/Programmes/4704.aspx

IAP/IAC Regional Workshops

A NASAC workshop on the theme of jatropha curcas-derived biofuel as a renewable energy source, hosted by the African Academy of Sciences (AAS), focused on recommendations of the IAC report, "Lighting the Way: Toward a Sustainable Energy Future.” The workshop took place in Nairobi, Kenya, 22-23 February 2010. The report is now available at: www.interacademies.net/?id=9397

An IAP panel at the 4th General Assembly and International Conference of the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD) discussed the outcomes of three IAP/IAC regional workshops examining the IAC report “Women for Science”. The three workshops took place in Mexico City, Nairobi and Dhaka in 2009 and the reports are available on the IAP website. A joint IAP-OWSD task force was established to further examine the findings of the workshops.

Notice Board

The Royal Society, UK, report, "The Scientific Century: Securing our Future Prosperity," assesses the role of science in long-term strategies for economic growth and analyzes the changing landscape of science – from international collaboration to the impact of web-based work. To review the report, see: royalsociety.org/the-scientificcentury/

Hassan II Academy of Science and Technology held its annual plenary session on “Emerging Diseases and Re-emerging Threats and Pandemic” in Rabat, 17-19 February 2010. The event included a special session on biodiversity in celebration of the International Year on Biodiversity. For a copy of the report (available in French and English), contact acascitech@menara.ma.

The science education project, “Following in the Footsteps of Eratosthenes,” organized annually by La Main à la Pâte in collaboration with the Académie des Sciences, France, took place on June 21, 2010. School children from 10 countries participated in classroom activities to measure the Earth's circumference by observing the shadow of a vertical stick at noon. The children used the same simple technique introduced by the Greek scientist Eratosthenes more than 2,000 years ago. For additional information, including a picture gallery, see: lamap.inrp.fr/eratos/mesures_juin_2010.

Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) will host the 6th African Science Academy Development Initiative (ASADI) conference in Western Cape, 7-10 November 2010. Issues to be discussed include increasing access to affordable and sustainable energy, bridging the energy gap between rural and urban areas, and energy as a primary driver of economic development. For additional information, contact: Mutheu@assaf.org.za

Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters has issued a call for nominations for the 2011 Abel Prize. Nomination letters should be sent to abelprisen@dnva.no. An online application form and information on previous prizewinners is available at: www.abelprisen.no/en/. The deadline is 15 September 2010.

The InterAcademy Medical Panel (IAMP) held its 3rd General Assembly and Scientific Meeting, “Global Collaboration for Local Health Action,” 9-11 June 2010, in Kuala Lumpur. The events were hosted by the Akademi Sains Malaysia. Jo Ivey Boufford, president of the New York Academy of Medicine and foreign secretary of US Institute of Medicine, was elected co-chair. Highlights and additional information about the meeting are available at: www.iamp-online.org.

Caribbean Scientific Union (CCC) held its IX and X General Assemblies in Santo Domingo in July 2009. The CCC secretariat is hosted by the Academy of Sciences of the Dominican Republic, For additional information, contact: c.martinez@academiadecienciasrd.org

European Academies Advisory Science Advisory Council (EASAC) has re-located its secretariat to the Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina in Halle, Germany. For more information, see: www.easac.eu or contact: info@easac.eu

News from the Secretariat

New Scientist has published the results of an opinion poll of science academies taken at the IAP General Assembly and Conference on Biodiversity, held at The Royal Society in London in January. The results of the poll can be reviewed in the 17 April 2010 edition of New Scientist. Also see the IAP website news item: "Science's global challenges - the 2020 vision of the world's academies."


Locana Gunaratne has been elected president of the National Academy of Sciences of Sri Lanka replacing Sunethra Atukorala.

El-Sherbini Maged has been elected president of the Academy of Scientific Research and Technology (ASRT). He replaces Tarek Hussein.

Suzanne Cory has been elected president of the Australian Academy of Science. She replaces Kurt Lambeck.

Raj Kafle Surendra has been elected vice chancellor of the Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) replacing Nath Bhattarai.

Arturo Menchaca has been elected president of the Academia Mexicana de Ciencias. He replaces Rosaura Ruiz Gutiérrez.

Joze Trontelj has been elected president of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (SASA). He replaces Bostjan Zeks.


IAP Secretariat:
tel: +39 040 2240-680/681; fax: +39 040 2240-688
email: iap@twas.org