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How to effectively apply Endogenous Knowledge from the Global South takes centre stage at the INGSA 2024 Conference 

Kigali, Rwanda: The issue of Endogenous knowledge within the Global South came under the spotlight today, on the margins of the 5th International Network for Governmental Science Advice (INGSA24) Conference in Kigali. 

The Organisation of Southern Cooperation (OSC) hosted a high-level panel discussion under the theme ‘Bridging Worlds of Knowledge – Promoting Endogenous Knowledge Development.” The interactive session fostered an understanding and unpacking of the theme – Endogenous Knowledge – and shared insights about harnessing diverse information and transdisciplinary research, in promoting and integrating home-grown or internally produced information into science advice, policy-making, and transformation, in the Global South. 

More than 300 delegates from 65 countries, international organisations and NGOs have been meeting this week in Kigali with clusters of discussions on a range of topics drawn from or related to scientific work. 

In his opening address to the session, OSC Secretary-General Manssour Bin Mussallam presented three key principles of inequalities that impact the gap- knowledge between and among countries of the Greater South, and other parts of the developed world. 

He cited: “The nature of knowledge and what consists legitimate knowledge; the inequities of economies of knowledge, and the geopolitics of knowledge, as crucial aspects, setting the tone for the discussants, drawn from various regions of the Global South, to apply information, statistics, and experience on how to bridge the knowledge gap. 

The panel of experts consisted of, Dr. Wahid Majrool, former Health Minister of Afghanistan, and Founder and Executive Director of the Afghanistan Centre for Health and Peace; Dr. Alice Karekezi, a national of Rwanda, and a scholarly practitioner from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, focused on decolonising international norms and construction of knowledge; Prof. Norbert Hounkonou, President of the African Science Academies (NASAC) and Chairperson of the OSC Conference of Associate Members; Prof, Hirut  Woldemarian, Under-Secretary-General for Research, Evaluation and Foresight (REEF), at the OSC and Prof. Abdelajil Akarri, professor of Comparative Education at the University of Geneva, in Switzerland. 

Fundamental points on developing and harnessing knowledge, addressing academic and non-academic education and other sectors, were raised by the panellists, whose clarion call was the need for increased dialogue and opportunities to harmonise divergent approaches to endogenous and non-endogenous knowledge for the good of the Greater South. 

INGSA is the world’s largest community of practice dedicated to enhancing the interfaces between knowledge producers and holders, public policy makers, and societies. Since its establishment in 2014, INGSA’s global conferences have led the way in the development and evolution of the study and practice of evidence-informed policymaking and scientific advice to governments. This is the first time that the conference is being held in a country from the Global South. 

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