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SciDevNet

The Science and Development Network aims to provide reliable and authoritative information about science and technology for the developing world. Their goal is to help both individuals and organizations in developing countries make informed decisions about how science and technology can improve economic and social development.


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Hardy Amazon 'Greens InTimes Of Drought
September 27, 2007 09:11 AM - Cássio Quiterio, SciDevNet

SAO PAULO - Forests in the Amazon are much more resilient to drought that previously thought, researchers have found.  A study published in Science last week (21 September) suggests that forests showed increased — not decreased - levels of photosynthesis in response to a drought.  Researchers concluded that canopy vegetation, composed mainly of leaves of the upper parts of trees, is capable of increasing photosynthesis during drought periods of up to two years

Hewlett Packard Helps Fight Africa's E-waste Battle
September 20, 2007 05:32 PM - Catarina Amorim, SciDevNet

Computer company Hewlett-Packard (HP) has launched a project to help local African enterprises perform safer and more effective electronic waste recycling.

The project, in association with the Global Digital Solidarity Fund (DSF) and the Swiss Institute for Materials Science and Technology (Empa), was launched in London, United Kingdom, yesterday (18 September).

The initiative will begin in Kenya, Morocco and Tunisia, examining each country's situation and providing expertise and funds to private initiatives to improve the level of e-waste recycling.

 

Court Halts Introduction Of GMO Rice In The Philippines
September 20, 2007 05:12 PM - Imelda Abano, SciDevNet

PHILIPPINES - A Philippine court has temporarily halted an application to bring genetically modified (GM) rice to the country, pending a study of possible health and environmental effects.

A temporary restraining order was issued yesterday (18 September) after Greenpeace, together with other nongovernmental organisations, challenged the Philippine government's right to approve Bayer Crop Science's LL62, a herbicide-tolerant type of hybrid rice.

 

Hewlett Packard to aid Africa's e-waste battle
September 20, 2007 07:50 AM - Catarina Amorim, SciDevNet

Computer company Hewlett-Packard (HP) has launched a project to help local African enterprises perform safer and more effective electronic waste recycling.The project, in association with the Global Digital Solidarity Fund (DSF) and the Swiss Institute for Materials Science and Technology (Empa), was launched in London, United Kingdom, yesterday (18 September).

'Biopiracy' requires reasoned treatment
September 20, 2007 07:47 AM - , SciDevNet

Scientists have long been implicated, whether actively or tacitly, in developed countries' campaigns to seek out and secure natural resources to fuel industrialisation and maintain their own living standards.This was the motive behind many 'scientific' expeditions to explore and map out the centre of Africa in the nineteenth century. More recently, studying indigenous medicine has become a cost-effective way of identifying active chemical ingredients from plants that might be valuable in modern medicine.

African Leaders Urge Acceptance of Science & Technology
September 18, 2007 12:52 PM - Ochieng' Ogodo, SciDevNet

Attitude and cultural tendencies are still major obstacles to knowledge transfer of science, technology and innovation (ST&I) in Africa and the rest of the developing world, say experts.

The remarks were made by delegates on the opening day of a ST&I symposium in Mbarara, Uganda last week (14 September), a precursor to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting taking place in the country in November.

The event looked at the needs of society — particularly the private sector and industry — in relation to the scientific knowledge and human resources provided by the education sector.

William Banage, of the Uganda National Academy of Sciences, said ST&I "goes beyond" just knowledge transfer between research institutions or north and south universities.

 

Developing Nations 'Need Genetic Resources Rules'
September 6, 2007 05:36 PM - Hepeng Jia, Reuters, SciDevNet

BEIJING - To benefit from genetic resources, developing countries need to improve their governance, a meeting in Beijing was told this week. Developing countries are losing out because their laws do not specify which resources should be paid for and how, said Gurdial Singh Nijar, a law professor at the University of Malaya in Malaysia. He made his remarks at an international workshop on genetic resources and indigenous knowledge, supported by the UN Convention of Biological Diversity.

Biodiversity requires global monitoring mechanism
September 6, 2007 08:05 AM - , SciDevNet

Biodiversity has received increasing attention from scientists, governments and the public since the 'Earth Summit' at Rio de Janeiro and the establishment of the international Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in 1992. There are local conservation successes to celebrate as a result, but global threats to biodiversity are still on the rise.

Climate And Biodiversity Crisis: The Gap Between Research And Policy Should Be Filled
September 5, 2007 03:36 PM - Michel Loreau, SciDevNet

With global diversity increasingly at risk, a mechanism like the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is required, argues Michel Loreau. Biodiversity has received increasing attention from scientists, governments and the public since the 'Earth Summit' at Rio de Janeiro and the establishment of the international Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in 1992. There are local conservation successes to celebrate as a result, but global threats to biodiversity are still on the rise. The CBD has failed to reverse this trend for several reasons, but here I focus on one that I believe could be relatively easily addressed.

Clinical Trials To Test Traditional Herbal Medicine To Treat HIV
September 5, 2007 03:31 PM - Carol Campbell, SciDevNet

South Africa - Clinical trials to test a traditional medicine's effectiveness in delaying the onset of AIDS in HIV-positive patients will begin in South Africa within weeks, according to researchers. Approximately 125 HIV-positive patients at Edendale Hospital in Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal province will take part in trials of the herb Sutherlandia frutescens, a well-known South African traditional medicine. The purpose of the trial will be to test the safety and effectiveness of capsules of Sutherlandia in patients newly diagnosed with HIV.

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