C. ASSAf Policymakers' Booklets

About this Collection

Policymakers' Booklets are summaries of Consensus Study Reports aiming at making scientific information accessible to policymakers and the general public.

Peer-Review Status: Peer-Reviewed

Enquiries: Susan Veldsman

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Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
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    Legends of South African Science II
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2020) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    After the overwhelming success of Legends of South African Science, published in 2017 as part of the 20 year celebrations of the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), this edition of Legends of South African Science II continues with profiling Members who were elected between 1993 – 2000. The 62 Members profiled in this edition represent some of the longest standing ASSAf Members. One of the strengths of a national Academy is the disciplinary diversity of its Membership. Collectively, the narratives of the Members profiled in this edition represent the apex of academic excellence and scholarship. All these Members have used their formal academic training in their specific fields and demonstrated how, through engagement with scholars in other fields, both locally and internationally, contributed to them becoming champions and leaders in advancing knowledge. Every narrative in this edition provides a unique perspective on contributions by accomplished South African scientists and scholars who, using an evidence-based approach have contributed significantly in growing the global knowledge production in their respective fields. Many of these scholars have held senior positions at academic institutions, been part of national and international committees, served at Governmental positions, and worked unstintingly in shaping the agendas of the post-apartheid South Africa. Their stories are fascinating, their contributions to science invaluable, and their service to society diverse and inspiring. It is also touching and inspiring to see how many scientists during this era were supported, inspired and uplifted by the late President Nelson Mandela. They were all committed to building a democratic South Africa, even in the face of many adversities. ASSAf strives in upholding its mandate of using evidence-based science in the service of society.
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    Neonicotinoid Insecticides: Use and Effects in African Agriculture - A Review and Recommendations to Policymakers
    (Network of African Science Academies (NASAC), 2019) Network of African Science Academies (NASAC)
    Agriculture is critically important for African societies and economies, but ensuring food security for Africa’s growing population is a major challenge due to climate change, structural changes in land use and management, and intensification of agriculture, including the use of pesticides. A synergistic relationship between agriculture and the beneficial services offered by nature (such as pollination and natural pest control) is a foundation of sustainable agriculture on which future food security depends. Such ‘ecosystem services’ are provided mainly (although not exclusively) by invertebrates, and the rapid decline in biodiversity in general and insects in particular globally has implications for productivity and future food security. Beneficial insects increase agricultural productivity and the quality of crops and are as (if not more) important in the African context than the rest of the world. One factor that has been shown to contribute to loss of ecosystem services in Europe and elsewhere is the increased use of a class of systemic insecticides called neonicotinoids, which act as insect neurotoxins. They are taken up by all parts of the plant, are water soluble and can thus spread in the environment, exposing not only the target pests but also beneficial insects ranging from honey bees and other pollinating insects to natural predators of the targeted pests. As a result, the use of some of these insecticides has been restricted in the European Union (EU) and some other countries. The debate preceding the EU restrictions was informed by a study on the impact of neonicotinoids on agriculture and ecosystem services by the European Academies’ Science Advisory Council (EASAC). Building on this foundation, the InterAcademy Partnership (IAP) and the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC) collaborated in a study to examine the implications of neonicotinoid insecticide use for ecosystem services and sustainable agriculture in Africa. The study was conducted between October 2018 and October 2019 and involved two workshops with scientists from 17 African countries as well as an extensive review of relevant African research. This project has collated an unprecedented amount of information, allowing the current situation relating to neonicotinoids in Africa to be assessed for the first time. The findings have been subjected to peer review and endorsed by NASAC member academies.
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    Regulation of Agricultural GM Technology in Africa
    (Academy of Science of South Africa, 2012) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    This policymakers’ booklet is produced by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) as part of the project “GMOs for African Agriculture: Opportunities and Challenges”. The project was implemented through ASSAf’s Committee on Science for Poverty Alleviation. The project is in its second year of implementation with funding from the Global Network of Science Academies (IAP).
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    Social Protection in Africa: Overview for Policymakers
    (Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), 2016-08) Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)
    What is social protection? - What are cash transfers? - What are social protection floors? - Why is social protection in Africa important? - Socio-economic context - The development of social protection in Africa - Non-contributory social protection programmes in Africa: Overview of programmes - Which types of social protection intervention are most common? - What is the size of cash transfers? - What is the institutional location and who funds social protection programmes? - How much do social protection programmes cost? - Social protection in Africa: Reviewing the evidence - Poverty and inequality reduction - Nutrition and food security - Health - Education - Gender - Productive outcomes - Community empowerment and citizen accountability - Social protection in Africa: Key issues - Rights-based approaches to social protection - Universalism and targeting - Gender - Conditional vs unconditional cash transfers - Cash or food - Institutionalisation - Affordability - Labour market linkages and informal workers - Technology - Informal social protection
©The Author/Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)