Closing of the 24th CSTD session

21 May 2021 12:00h - 14:00h

Event report

Applying gender lens to STI policies to deliver SDG 5

Gender equality in the science, technology, and innovation (STI) sector should be addressed in a systemic way through primary education, higher education, and funding of science and research. This can be done through awareness raising, training, and education on the gender dimensions of technology and innovation, said Mr Jarmo Sareva (Ambassador for Innovation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland). Further, more women should become role models in the technical sector, technical companies should provide support networks for women, and discriminatory culture and outright harassment should be prevented. He further stated that action should be taken regarding gender equality in STI to generate better gender disaggregated data, to create networks across countries and sectors, to learn and build on best practices, and to undertake successful pilot initiatives.

Regarding the policy environment necessary to facilitate gender balance in STI, Ms Shamsa Saleh (Secretary-General of the UAE Gender Balance Council) highlighted the role of the legal context and the private sector-specific policy action required to ensure women’s participation in the STI field.

Ms Mayra Jiménez (Minister of Women Affairs of the Dominican Republic) stated that developing countries such as the Dominican Republic must foster initiatives ensuring that women can join knowledge management processes; she highlighted the need of pedagogy to enable women to overcome limitations and exclusion. Ms Lowri Angharad Rees (Programme Specialist at UN Women) added that emerging technologies should equally benefit women and, to that end, they should be designed by diverse groups with input by women, so that women not only safely and meaningfully use digital technologies, but also lead in the design of such technologies.


The Science, Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP) Reviews of Zambia, the Dominican Republic, and Uganda

Mr Ángel González Sanz (Head of the Policy Review Section of the Science, Technology and ICT Branch of the Division on Technology and Logistics at UNCTAD) introduced the Science, Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP) Reviews of Zambia, the Dominican Republic, and Uganda, prepared by UNCTAD.

The STIP Review of Uganda was prepared in close collaboration with the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation of Uganda. The report highlighted that strengthening national innovation is required to improve the competitiveness of Ugandan firms and industries competing in the global economy. The Review provides recommendations to orient STI investment and capacity development in ways that take advantage of the opportunities created by the SDGs.

The Review of the Dominican Republic provides an analysis of the effectiveness of STI policies and measures available in the Dominican Republic. Based on this analysis, the Review suggests a set of policy recommendations to foster the contribution that STI may make to national development and to improve national capacities in STI.

The most recent of the reviews is that of Zambia, which was undertaken at the request of the Zambian Ministry of Higher Education. The report has brought several issues to the attention of Zambian policy makers, including the need to improve horizontal coordination of STI and clear stipulation of the STI policy domain in future national development plans.


Closing of the 24th session of CSTD

At the end of the 24th session of the CSTD, Mr Peter Major (Vice-Chairman of the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD)) addressed closing remarks and presented a series of resolutions and decisions adopted by the Commission.

For Agenda Item 2, the Commission adopted a resolution, entitled ‘Assessment of the progress made in the implementation of and follow-up to the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society’.

For Agenda Item 3, the Commission adopted a resolution entitled ‘Science and technology for development’.

For Agenda Item 6, the Commission adopted priority themes for its 25th session: Industry 4.0 for Inclusive Development; and STI for Sustainable Urban Development in a post-Covid World.

The Commission also adopted the following four draft decisions:

  • extension of the mandate of the Gender Advisory Board of the Commission;
  • the participation of NGOs and civil society entities in the work of the Commission;
  • the participation of academic and technical entities in the work of the Commission; and
  • the participation of business sector entities in the work of the Commission.

Finally, the Commission also decided to recommend these resolutions and decisions for adoption by ECOSOC. Under Item 5, the Commission elected three members of the Bureau for the 25th Session of the Commission.