UNESCO 42nd General Conference Global Policy Debate 

Statement of the International Science Council by ISC CEO, Salvatore Aricò


Paris, 13 November 2023

President, Distinguished delegates, Ladies and gentlemen,

I am delighted to deliver this statement on behalf of the International Science Council. We federate more than 245 national and regional scientific organizations including academies of social and human sciences, research councils, international disciplinary bodies, and young science academies. The ISC and UNESCO have a long and proud history of working together, and indeed UNESCO founded the social sciences predecessor of the ISC and worked very closed with the natural sciences predecessor.

We work hand in hand with both the Natural as well as the Social and Human Sciences Sector of UNESCO. The recently adopted UN Decade of Science for Sustainable Development, coordinated by UNESCO, provides a unique opportunity for reorienting science and science systems towards providing concrete solutions to the multiple crises that we all face today. This will require substantial change in the way science operates and delivers. Together, the ISC and UNESCO can provide a transformative agenda based on the notion of actionable knowledge.

A further example of our evolving and enhanced partnership is the implementation of UNESCO’s Recommendation on Science and Scientific Researchers and the broader area of freedom and responsibility of science. We are committed to advancing the right to science and strengthening national and regional science systems, and to help in providing the conditions in which science and scientists thrive.

Just last month we held a meeting of Pacific Island scholars to co-design and establish a Pacific academy of sciences and humanities. This is an example of how the ISC promotes science in action by working to enhance the organization of active scientists and connect them across the world.

The operationalization of UNESCO’s Declaration on Open Science, with which the ISC has assisted its development, is essential for enhancing how science can assist the global public good.

In reinforcing our partnership, the ISC and UNESCO can strengthen trust in and the application of robust knowledge in every community, member states, and the multilateral space.

Thank you.

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