The Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science, and Technology (MoHERST) hosted a pivotal roundtable discussion on the development of a roadmap to harness Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI) for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Project.
The meeting was held on Tuesday 30th January 2024 at the MoHERST Conference Hall.
The event brought together key stakeholders, experts, and partners to deliberate on strategies to harness the power of STI in achieving sustainable development objectives.
The roundtable discussion, held under the auspices of the STI for SDGs Roadmap in Africa project, marked a crucial step in shaping effective policies and strategies to bolster innovation ecosystems in Africa. The project, a collaboration between the Joint Research Centre (JRC) and the Directorate General for International Partnerships (DG INTPA) of the European Commission, seeks to align STI initiatives with SDGs, particularly focusing on enhancing food self-sufficiency.
Specifically, the key objectives of the project include:
Information Sharing: Participants engaged in comprehensive discussions on the STI for SDGs Roadmap in Africa project, sharing insights and experiences to better understand the challenges and opportunities within the Gambian context;
Prioritizing Sustainability Issues: Stakeholders collaborated to identify and prioritize sustainability issues within The Gambia's food system, laying the groundwork for targeted interventions;
Mapping Existing STI Instruments: A detailed exploration of the current STI instruments in The Gambia took place, enabling participants to identify areas for improvement, update existing tools, or create new instruments.
During the roundtable discussion, Deputy Permanent Secretary (Technical) of the Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science, and Technology, Mr. Mucktarr M.Y Darboe underscored on the significance of the roundtable discussion. He said the discussion has demonstrated the commitment in leveraging Science, Technology, and Innovation in addressing the pressing challenges in achieving sustainable development.
DPS Darboe went further to say that the insights shared during the discussion will guide future policies and initiatives of the Ministry towards ensuring a more food-secure and sustainable future for The Gambia.
Dr. Pierre Rialland, Representative of Joint Research Center (JRC) commenced by expressing his heartfelt appreciation to MoHERST in leading the roundtable discussion. He added that the collaboration with MoHERST is pivotal in advancing the STI for SDGs Roadmap in Africa project.
Furthermore, Dr. Railland reinforced that the engagement and commitment shown by Gambian stakeholders today will undoubtedly contribute to shaping effective STI policies and strategies in alignment with European Union priorities for cooperation with Africa.
However, the outcomes of the roundtable discussion will feed into the wider stakeholder engagement workshop today where the formulation of the STI for SDGs Roadmap specific to The Gambia will be elaborated. The roadmap is intended to serve as a guiding document for policymakers, outlining actionable strategies to enhance food self-sufficiency through the application of science, technology, and innovation.
The STI for SDGs Roundtable Discussion at the MoHERST Conference Hall was a collaborative effort towards fostering sustainable development in The Gambia. And the Ministry remains committed to working with national and international partners to transform insights gained today into concrete actions that propel the nation towards achieving its SDGs.