Ensuring participation of developing countries in international research
Enhancing endogenous scientific and technological capacity building
Endogenous capacity is the degree of domestic capability to exercise independent, informed judgement and initiate actions regarding acquisition, deployment and generation of science and technology for economic and social development. This capacity is to be seen in the context of increasing complexity in the ability to manage technological change. There are four orders of endogenous capacity: making informed judgments on matters related to science and technology; selecting and utilizing technologies; adapting and accreting technologies; creating new technologies. The concept of endogenous capacity is evolutionary and multidimensional. The capacity in each country may vary according to the stage of its development. It may even differ in different sectors at a given time. The process of endogenous capacity building in science and technology can be facilitated through international cooperation. At present many sources and modes of cooperation are available. Full benefits, however, can only be derived if national needs and absorption capacity are realistically assessed by the relevant stakeholders in the countries concerned. Recognition of the different types (technical assistance, collaborative research and development, and business relationships), levels and modes of international cooperation, is necessary in order to formulate a national strategy for linking international cooperation in science and technology needs.
The United Nations promotes a [Tripartite Technical Cooperation] scheme, involving partnership between a newly industrialized country, an advanced country (or international organization), and a recipient developing country which facilitates the cross-cultural process of technology transfer and long-term partnerships, especially in areas involving newly emerging technologies.
A societal ability to "manage change" demands a technically literate population as well as a scientific and technological community well integrated into international peer networks. Every international cooperation project should be assessed in terms of its contribution to endogenous scientific and technological capacity building. Perhaps the most compelling argument for the build up of endogenous capacity in developing countries is the necessity for resilience in the face of unexpected trends and events. The kind of capacity needed is more generalized and less sector-specific than that needed for ordinary techno-economic development, and is thus harder to plan for.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a collaboration between UIA and Mankind 2000, started in 1972. It is the result of an ambitious effort to collect and present information on the problems with which humanity is confronted, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies. Problems included are those identified in international periodicals but especially in the documents of some 60,000 international non-profit organizations, profiled in the Yearbook of International Organizations.
The Encyclopedia includes problems which such groups choose to perceive and act upon, whether or not their existence is denied by others claiming greater expertise. Indeed such claims and counter-claims figure in many of the problem descriptions in order to reflect the often paralyzing dynamics of international debate. In the light of the interdependence demonstrated among world problems in every sector, emphasis is placed on the need for approaches which are sufficiently complex to encompass the factions, conflicts and rival worldviews that undermine collective initiative towards a promising future.
Non-profit, apolitical, independent, and non-governmental in nature, the UIA has been a pioneer in the research, monitoring and provision of information on international organizations, international associations and their global challenges since 1907.