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Knowledge Society Agency (UMIC)
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13th Session of the UN's Commission on Science and Technology for Development

 - 23/05/2010

UN logo The 13th meeting of the UN’s CSTD – Commission on Science and Technology for Development took place from 17 to 21 May 2010 at the Palace of the Nations of the UNO – United Nations Organisation, in Geneva.

The CSTD examined the following topics at its 13th meeting:

  • Evaluation of progress in achieving and following up on the results of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) at the regional and international level, which include the Internet Governance Forum (IGF);
  • Improvements and innovations in funding mechanisms, chiefly as regards Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) for development;
  • New and Emerging technologies, in particular renewable energy for development;
  • Gender, science and technology, as a contribution to achieving internationally-agreed goals on gender equality and women’s involvement;
  • Evaluation reports on Ghana and Lesotho’s Science, Technology and Innovation policies.

The outcomes of the discussions were submitted to the ECOSOC plenary session scheduled for July.

The main documents presented for examination at the CSTD included:

The Contributions to the UN Secretary-General´s 2010 Report on WSIS-implementation and follow-up and the contributions to the Inter-sessional Panel were also made available.

The 13th Session of the CSTD concluded with the approval of the recommendation of the UN’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), which adopts the following two resolutions and three decisions:

Portugal was elected as a member of the CSTD a year ago with a mandate running until the end of 2012 at a meeting of the UN’s ECOSOC – Economic and Social Council held on 18th May 2009 at UN headquarters in New York. It hereby becomes one of 10 Western countries on this Commission, which currently includes Germany, Austria, Belgium, the United States of America, Finland, France, Israel, Switzerland and Turkey.

The representatives of CSTD Member States are nominated by the UN based on the qualifications and scientific or professional knowledge necessary for the Commission’s mandate. Portugal’s entry into the CSTD was thus approved by ECOSOC through the election of Luis Magalhães, President of The Knowledge Society Agency (UMIC).

The CSTD, which was set up in 1992, is a subsidiary body of ECOSOC providing high-level advice to this Council and to the UN General Assembly on Science and Technology (S&T) policies and their implications for development, with Information Society-related topics added recently to its remit on 28 July 2006. According to the provisions, the CSTD consists of 43 countries with 4-year mandates, including, in addition to the 10 aforementioned Western countries, 11 African countries, 9 from Asia, 8 from South America and the Caribbean and 5 from Eastern Europe.

ECOSOC was mandated by the Tunis Agenda for the Information Society in 2005 with supervising the entire UN system for following up the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) which included a mandate to review the CSTD with the objective of beefing up this Commission with these competences. In this way, at its July 2006 meeting, ECOSOC decided that the CSTD would be the focal point for the follow-up system for WSIS outcomes, providing advice on the corresponding subjects for recommendations to be drafted on achieving the Summit outcomes, for which it should:

  • Gauge regional and international progress in achieving the Action Lines (text in Portuguese) stemming from the WSIS;
  • Promote the sharing of best and most effective practices and lessons, identifying barriers and suggesting actions to overcome them in order to achieve the WSIS outcomes effectively;
  • Promote dialogue and partnerships in coordination with other specialised UN funds, programmes and agencies to help contribute to achieving WSIS objectives;

Ensure Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) are used to achieve the internationally-agreed development goals, with the participation of governments, the private sector, civil society, the UN and other international organisations, in accordance with their different roles and responsibilities.

Last updated ( 12/08/2011 )