The Royal Society submission on the International Development White Paper

14 September 2023

The Royal Society’s submission on the forthcoming International Development White Paper makes the case for the important role science can play in delivering on the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs).  Scientific research is fundamentally an international endeavour and through partnerships across the globe, science has a critical role to play in achieving these goals.  As well as work on the SDGs our submission also highlights critical research areas and their relevance to development policy, for example the role AI and data can plan in responding to emergencies, and the role of science in moving toward a net zero future.

The Society has also called for sustained and predicable funding for capacity strengthening work to support science across the Global South.  The recent cuts to the UK Governments Overseas Development Aid (ODA) had a significant and negative impact on research collaboration, and we hope the White Paper will take steps to address the damage done through previous short notice funding cuts.  Through our submission we have also highlighted opportunities for capacity strengthening across multiple aspects of how science systems work and how this can support wider development goals, including through driving economic growth.