Sharing our experiences from the “Science Advice and Science Leadership Workshop for Early Career Scientists and Policy Makers” held in Addis Ababa from October 31 to 2 November, 2019

The aforementioned opportunity was posted as one of the “Tailored Opportunities” in “The African Academic/Researcher” blog By Dr. Mulubrhan Balehegn. Hailekiros Shibhato (Ph.D.) and Dawit Gebregziabher (Ph.D.) were among the many applicants for this opportunity. Finally, we were fortunate enough to be informed that we are selected for the workshop. We have confirmed to participate and attended the workshop. As a result, we are glad to share our experiences with our wider network.

The future scientific development in Africa requires interdisciplinary, interconnected and international teams to contribute to evidence-informed policy formulation and implementation. Cognizant of this fact this workshop was organized to gather international teams with diverse fields of studies from Africa and the rest of the world. The main theme of the workshop was to “ensure effective and efficient policy formulation and implementation, providing scientific evidence with policy decision making”. This workshop was organized by “The Ethiopian Young Academy of Sciences (EtYAS), the Ethiopian Academy of Sciences (EAS), the International Network for Government Science Advice (INGSA), UNESCO International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa (IICBA), Global Young Academy (GYA) and the African Science Leadership Program (ASLP) of Future Africa, University of Pretoria”

From this workshop, we have clearly understood that science development capacity in Africa will be achieved not only through the technical training of people but also through the leadership quality fit for leading the dynamic and ever-changing environment. We have gained the leadership role that we can play in the science advice space and personal strategy for our continued engagement. The resource persons for this workshop were leading experts from around the world. Some of the panel discussions were: • Transitioning from careers at the bench, science policy, and science diplomacy • The Use of Scientific Evidence in Developing Teacher Policies in Africa • How can Science Advice to Governments Help Unlock Research for Development in the Global South? and • Experiences in Language Policy Making in Ethiopia

We had also a number of activities shared by the facilitators such as how to become an active listener, how to generate divergent ideas and how to converge them. How to develop one idea and develop the project accordingly. Receiving feedback for your group project and provide feedback for projects of other groups. Finally, after considering the comments from the participants from the other group, the group will develop an action plan to address one issue by mentioning that sub-activities (what), when it will be implemented and who will be responsible to address this action. Moreover, it was also a great opportunity to share peer-to-peer experiences and continued networking among the participants, who represented Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania, South Sudan, and Canada.

Author: African Academic/Researcher

Science and Research by Africans for Africa

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