A lack of investment in science is holding Africa back as it leads African researchers to leave the continent, Thierry Zomahoun, chairperson and founder of the Next Einstein Forum (NEF) says. He adds that Africa loses $4 billion a year by outsourcing such jobs, Reuters reports.
He spoke with Reuters during the NEF Global Gathering in Dakar that was attended by some 700 mathematicians and scientists from all over the world as well as government officials. The event also highlighted the work of 15 young African researchers, who are tackling issues ranging from big data to waste management.
"There are still a lot of scientists across Africa, but they have been made invisible by a lack of development and investment," Zomahoun tells Reuters.
He adds that private sector funds are needed in addition to public monies to invest in STEM and R&D.
"The pressure is on to catch up and keep pace so Africa is not left in the wake of technological progress," adds Rwandan President Paul Kagame. "We really cannot be satisfied with just ending extreme poverty. Our aim is shared and sustainable prosperity. And the key to that is science and innovation, bound by research."