University Education and Scientific Research Get a Boost From African Leaders

At a recent summit of the African Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, leaders of African nations approved a resolution calling for a revitalization of African universities and the spending of 1 percent of their gross domestic product on scientific research. Rwandan President Paul Kagame said that he planned to raise his country’s spending on research to 3 percent of the gross domestic product.

Many westerners hold the view that as to scientific research, there is little work of importance conducted on the African continent. But nothing could be further from the truth. There have been major scientific achievements in pharmaceutical development, crop management, plant science, and genetics. The South African Large Telescope is among the largest in the world capable of detecting objects a billion times too faint to be seen by the naked eye.