The state of science across the globe
In 2015, countries pledged to spend more on research as a share of gross domestic product (GDP) when they committed to the Sustainable Development Goals. According to the UNESCO Science Report: The race against time for smarter development, released in June 2021, research spending actually increased by 19.2 per cent between 2014 and 2018 – with almost half of this growth driven by China alone.
In spite of this progress, four out of five countries are still spending less than one per cent of their GDP on research.
The report also reveals that countries of all income levels now share a common agenda to transition to digital and green economies. But this will require a massive investment in modern infrastructure, such as high-performance computing, data centres, and solar and wind farms.
Energy is at the heart of this dual transition. In fact, renewable energy was the only energy sector to see growth in 2020, at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We must educate algorithms”, The UNESCO Courier, October-December 2020
Research: “This epidemic will be a detonator”, The UNESCO Courier, July-September 2020
SESAME: Scientific excellence in the Middle East, The UNESCO Courier, October-December 2018
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