Who are we? What do we do? What do we hope to achieve?
What we hope to achieve.
African Gong was Invited by UNESCO to represent the African Region at the Launch of the Inaugural World Science Day for Peace and Development – International Science Centres’ and Science Museums’ Day (ISCSMD), 10th November 2016, at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France. This platform is UNESCO’s Call to Action to Science Centres and Science Museums, to highlight contributions of science centres and science museums to the delivery of the SDG’s. Read More
The leadership of African Gong in the co-delivery of the 2nd African Conference on EID and Biosecurity in partnership with GET, which took place in Lagos, Nigeria, in July 2016, has produced the Consensus statement and a key outcome document, entitled, The Lagos Declaration and Call to Action on Science Communication and PLUS in Africa. This seminal and ground-breaking document, the first of its kind in Africa, is a strategic, inclusive and empowering exhortation to all African scientists, researchers, academics and policy-makers, in Universities, Research Institutions, public and private sectors, and in the African Diaspora, to mobilise action, resources, policy development, programmes and capacity-building for the delivery of innovative, African-centric, culturally and locally relevant and contextualised science communication and the public learning and understanding of science (PLUS) for African publics. Read More.
Access to STEM for women on an equal basis with men is necessary to transfer patterns of productivity, contribute to job creation and new ways of working and in promoting the establishment of a knowledge-based society resulting in wealth creation. Access by women to STEM also has the potential to positively contribute to improving the quality of life of women and men in African societies and communities.
The full and effective participation of women in the decision-making and implementation processes related to STEM including planning and setting priorities for research and development and the choice, acquisition, adaptation, innovation and application of STEM for development, aptly captures the essence of the prerequisites for delivering gender equality for women and men in the scientific enterprise.
The challenge that the African continent faces in this century is to turn these noble aspirations into actions.
Within the African context, the key determinants and drivers of women’s advancement in STEM fields and leadership in Higher Education have been premised on the challenges of growing and sustaining the critical mass of African women in academia and research to the senior levels that would lead on to management positions in the sector.
Vocational and polytechnic institutes in African countries are also critical key sites for capacity development of women in STEM. Technologists, technicians, artisans and craftspeople are the bedrock on which small and medium-sized enterprises and businesses are founded, especially in operations and maintenance.
Given the above scenarios and imperatives, African Gong has worked on two fronts to contribute to developments in the Women in STEM agenda:
African Gong has partnered with three science communication organisations in Latin America and the Caribbean to conceptualise and deliver the Imagine-Pangea Africa-Latin America Science Communication Competition, which was launched in 2017, and targeted at Masters’ and PhD students in African, Latin American and Caribbean Institutions, across the scientific disciplines – natural, life and physical sciences and the social sciences and humanities. The partner organisations are: The Imagine Project based in Brazil, Red-POP – the Latin American and Caribbean sister organisation to African Gong; and Brazilian Association for the Advancement of Science (SBPC). The Imagine-Pangea initiative uniquely advances language diversity and inclusion such that the candidates need to present their research work in one of the following languages: English, French, Portuguese or Spanish.
The winners then have their videos translated into more than ten languages, including indigenous ones, such as Guarani, Quechua and Yoruba. The unique good practice of the Imagine-Pangea programme has been featured in prestigious journals, such as the Nature Scientific Journal. Read More.
A key component of the African Gong tool-kit is to operate through strategic partnerships with key stakeholders and institutions in Africa, and internationally, including the African Diaspora. These partnerships are a strategic demonstration of African Gong’s commitment to its African-centric vision and mission of harnessing and leveraging the visibility, agency and capacity of African institutions and practitioners for the advancement of science communication, scientific outreach and scientific literacy in Africa. In this regard, African Gong has formalised working partnerships via Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)’s, with the following organisations:
African Gong has been an active member of the ever growing Ecsite Advocacy Group on Diversity, Equity and Social Inclusion, which is made up of Ecsite members committed to leading and driving innovation and transformation in their institutions on these critical inclusion parameters. The Group was formed as a direct outcome of the Keynote Address of the African Gong President, Dr. Elizabeth Rasekoala, at the Ecsite Annual Conference in Graz, Austria, in 2016, and since then has been actively engaging to engender the institutionalisation of good practice across the field, in solidarity and collaborative partnerships. The Ecsite Advocacy Group has also been convening the Pre-Conference full day training Workshops at the Ecsite Annual Conferences, and has delivered these at the 2017 Conference in Porto, the 2018 Conference in Geneva, and in 2019, at the Ecsite Annual Conference, in Copenhagen.
African Gong has been a Co-Convenor of these Pre-Conference Training Workshops, delivered as part of the Ecsite Annual Conferences.
African Gong has been invited to contribute to key STI policy-making platforms on the African continent, such as the African Peer Review Mechanism, where it has advocated for STI and Science Communication to be included in the APRM National Assessment Frameworks for Governance and Development. African Gong has also contributed to the development of Monitoring & Evaluation Frameworks for Science Communication, in the African Union Commission’s STISA-2024 road-map for African development. Read More
African Gong has been invited to contribute its uniquely African-centric advocacy, perspectives and good practice to various international Conferences and events and thus, has engendered inclusive global discourses and outcomes in the growing foot-print and development of the science communication field across the world. Read More.
The African Gong President – Dr. Elizabeth Rasekoala has been honoured with an international science communication award, in recognition of her long-standing work in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in science communication globally. Dr. Rasekoala was conferred with The NAT AWARD by the Natural Science Museum of Barcelona, in Barcelona, Spain, on the 12 June 2019. This is a highly prestigious international recognition also for African Gong, and its work in the development of these good practices in science communication across the African continent, and globally. Read More
The good practice advocacy and unique transformation/capacity-building programmes of African Gong are engendering a growing recognition in the media and relevant press outlets, in the print media, online media, and on social media platforms. Read More.
In addition, African Gong has contributed Chapters in the following seminal Books: