To foster the active engagement of its Members, the Council kickstarted the ISC Global Knowledge Dialogue (GKD) series. The GKD series, which started with Africa at the 2022 World Science Forum, will follow with Asia and the Pacific in 2023, and Latin America and the Caribbean in 2024.
This year, Members strongly benefitted from the ISC’s increased cooperation with the UN system. The Council relayed numerous calls for experts from UN-led initiatives, opening exclusive nomination tracks to its membership. Through the ISC, Members were able to nominate experts in a UN open call to advise the seventh edition of UNEP’s flagship assessment, GEO-7, as well as appoint their experts in a group dedicated to developing a policy brief ahead of the UN 2023 Water Conference. Members moreover received special accreditations for 40 experts to attend the conference in 2023. The ISC also sought Members’ nominations in order to establish the Liaison Committee of its Regional Focal Point for Latin American and the Caribbean. Such opportunities to participate in high-level international working groups and expert panels continue to be regularly published on the ISC Membership Noticeboard.
Event-wise, the ISC also partnered with Members to celebrate the kick-off of the International Year of Basic Sciences for Sustainable Development 2022, led by the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics, and the second year of the International Year of Caves and Karst, led by the International Union of Speleology.
Such sharing of expertise and input from ISC Members and their networks is critical to the ISC and to science as it ensures a greater transdisciplinary and geographical variety – creating a skilled and diverse scientific representation globally. Continuously eager to improve its commitment by hearing and learning from its membership, the ISC Secretariat held a series of in-depth consultations with African Members to understand their organizational and scientific priorities for the coming years. Dubbed ‘one-on-ones’, these discussions took place prior to the Global Knowledge Dialogue held in South Africa in December 2022. They fed into the programme of the event, as well as discussions between the ISC and Future Africa to develop an agreement to support African agendas and capacities, and strengthen the presence of African science on the global stage.
Throughout the year, the ISC fuelled dialogues by organizing regular online meetings with its Members, including sessions to discuss UN processes and outputs, such as the UNESCO Recommendation on Open Science, and by offering new opportunities to engage with the ISC leadership through privileged exchanges. At the beginning of his presidency in January 2022, Peter Gluckman invited all representatives of ISC Members and affiliated bodies for a virtual ‘meet and greet’. The ISC repeated these occasions, first in May with a session that provided an opportunity for Members to receive critical updates from the ISC President, and in September with an interactive discussion on recent and upcoming developments for the ISC.
Finally, the ISC substantially increased the capacity of its membership team in 2022, by appointing a Membership Development Officer dedicated to identifying new opportunities for engagement and collaboration with ISC Members. This year, this translated into working more closely with next-generation science leader organizations to provide young and early-career scientists with increased opportunities to participate in the ISC’s activities and programmes.
Diversity in science is reflected in the diversity of the ISC membership.Salvatore Aricò, Chief Executive Officer of the International Science Council
Such diversity of disciplines and epistemologies play across different aspects of the science enterprise, resulting in a knowledge that is salient, timely and cogent. The ISC constituency as a whole will continue to nurture and treasure the diversity of and synergies among all ISC Members.
In this section:
EuroScience Open Forum
In July 2022, the ISC partnered with ESOF, Europe’s largest biennial meeting providing a platform to the scientific community for interdisciplinary and intersectional debate on scientific culture, scientific research and innovation – for and with society.
World Science Forum and the Global Knowledge Dialogue
In early December, the ISC held the first edition of its Global Knowledge Dialogue series in Cape Town (South Africa) on the margins of the 2022 World Science Forum. The Forum, an international conference fostering and maintaining a dialogue between the scientific community, society, policy-makers and industry, was held this year under the theme ‘science for social justice’.
Young academies and associations membership campaign
In 2022, the ISC launched a new global campaign offering Affiliate Membership to eligible young scientific groups that would build the voice of early-career scientists and researchers in the Council’s structures. The membership campaign included exploratory one-on-one meetings with international young academies and associations. These critical conversations provided the backdrop for global scientific collaboration and exchange, which resulted in 15 membership applications from young scientific groups from all regions of the world.
The ISC Fellowship
In 2022, the ISC launched its new fellowship programme. Envisaged as a pillar of the Council’s structure and capacity, the ISC Fellowship will help advance the ISC mission to promote and use science for the global public good, so that science can benefit everyone.