It is vital to build capacity in the basic sciences in Africa
This year is the centenary of the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics of which South Africa is one of the 13 founding members, and which has 60 member countries. It is also the International Year of Basic Sciences for Sustainable Development.
These celebrations come at a critical time, as the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation has highlighted the basic sciences are being neglected worldwide. This has led to a state of serious vulnerability in disciplines such as physics, maths and statistics. These are key to innovation, development and the world of work in the 4IR (Fourth Industrial Revolution) and Society 5.0. Nurturing the basic sciences has become a priority and we have made this part of Nelson Mandela University’s national and continental strategy.