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Concurrent Abstracts


A Global Science Corps for Developing Countries
Organized and presented by: Phillip Griffiths, Director, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey, USA and Chair, Science Institutes Group

Sigma Xi, especially in its international activities, shares important objectives with a younger organization called the Millennium Science Initiative, or MSI. The MSI began operation in 1998 for the primary purpose of strengthening science and its uses in the developing world. Like Sigma Xi, it attempts to foster outreach to global organizations, emphasizes regional networks and partnerships, and builds capacity through education and training. Scientific guidance and program oversight are coordinated by the Science Institutes Group (SIG), based at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ. SIG, working closely with the World Bank, has implemented programs in Chile, Mexico, and Brazil, and has designed programs in several countries of sub-Saharan Africa. Within the MSI, SIG has recently created the Global Science Corps (GSC) so that volunteer scientists from scientifically developed countries can share their experience and expertise with students and scientists in developing nations. The idea for a Global Science Corps was proposed by Dr. Harold Varmus, President of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and a SIG board member. His vision includes elements of the US Peace Corps, Doctors Without Borders, and the Hughes Fellowship program. The GSC will engage its volunteer scientists at early, transitional or late stages of their careers. In the host countries, scientists and students will be invited to be partners in research and to learn by doing. The primary goal of the program is to increase scientific human capital in the host countries, while at the same time offering younger and transitional GSC scientists the opportunity to conduct meaningful research that will benefit their own careers. back to top

Sharing Scientific Information Across National and Disciplinary Boundaries
Organized by: Rosalind Reid, Editor, American Scientist and Journalist in Residence, Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara
Presented by: Alan Anderson, Research and Editorial Director, Science Institutes Group; Luis Benítez-Bribiesca, Editor-in-Chief, Archives of Medical Research; Founder and Head, Research Division of Oncology, National Medical Center of Mexico; and Professor of Pathology, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México; Somdatta Sinha, Senior Scientist at the Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology, Hyderabad

Scientists in developing countries sometimes must work in relative isolation from peers in their fields. This physical isolation is reinforced by the way scientific publishing is organized. Developing-country scientists have difficulty publishing in international journals and getting access to those journals. In addition, the traditional journal system does not promote information sharing between disciplines. What are the trends in international communication of science, and what actions need to be taken to break down these barriers? Are there success stories of multidisciplinary, international communication? back to top

Collaborative Research: South-South & South-North
Organized by: Third World Academy of Sciences
Presenters: José Luis Morán López, Director General, Instituto Potosino de Investigación Científica y Tecnológica A.C. Eugenia del Pino Veintimilla, Professor of Biology, Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador

This session will focus on a number of research projects in the Latin America that have been developed within a framework of North-South cooperation. Discussions will examine how these frameworks have aided scientific communities in both the developed and developing world and, more generally, how the projects have helped advance our understanding of global scientific issues. Particular attention will be paid to the mechanisms by which North-South cooperation, when instituted in an effective manner, can stimulate South-South cooperation. back to top

Professors Across Borders: Funding Internationalism on Campus
Organized and presented by: William Peterson, Co-Director, International Institute, California State University San Bernardino (CSUSB)

California State University San Bernardino’s commitment to internationalism is enshrined in the university’s strategic plan as well as the President’s mission statement, where it is identified as one of six program areas to which the university is committed. To further this commitment, early in 2003 the CSUSB International Institute sought out and received university funding for the Professors Across Borders program, a new category of faculty travel grants specifically earmarked to further internationalize the campus. These grants were designed to facilitate faculty travel in support of internationalizing the curriculum; to develop and promote opportunities for students to study and work abroad; to encourage international research; and to strengthen relationships with partner institutions outside of the U.S. As the program completes its first year of operations, the two Co-Directors of the institute will offer an overview of the program while accessing its successes and shortcomings, with a particular eye toward determining how this and other sources of funding may support further internationalization of the sciences on campus. back to top

A Model for Trans-Boundary Marine Science Cooperation (Part I): The Red Sea Marine Peace Park Cooperative Research Program
Organized and presented by: Michael Crosby, Executive Director, U.S. National Science Board

Israel and Jordan share shoreline around the Northern Gulf of Aqaba and are promoting this region as a tourism destination center with water projects, free zones, and other coastal infrastructure developments that are accelerating already rapid population growth and commercial development rates. Each country's individual development policies impact the other's marine resources and their ability to effectively manage those resources. To facilitate the incorporation of new and existing knowledge into Gulf of Aqaba management and policy decisions, a new paradigm for the interaction and role of integrated, multi-disciplinary science, management and education/outreach efforts must be developed. A pioneering effort to employ and test this new paradigm was implemented through the Red Sea Marine Peace Park Cooperative Research, Monitoring and Management Program (RSMPP Program). The RSMPP Program is a joint undertaking between the government of Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan that fosters trans-boundary cooperation leading to greater conservation and sustainable use of the outstanding coral reef ecosystem resources. The overall goal of the RSMPP Program is to provide resource managers in Israel and Jordan the scientific understanding of the basic physical, chemical, and biological processes in the Gulf of Aqaba, and the impacts of human activities on those resources and processes. back to top

Regional Communication of Science to the Public
Organized by: Lisbeth Fog, President, Colombian Association of Science Journalism
Presented by: Maria del Carmen Cevallos, Head of Technology Transfer and Dissemination, Fundación para la Ciencia y la Tecnología (FUNDACYT); Lisbeth Fog; Dario Sánchez, Chief, Division of Science, Culture and Communication, Colciencias

Communicating scientific concepts and major research results to the public is generally seen as a necessary for several reasons. Science and technology are now considered an integral part of building a sustainable economy in the information age. Particularly in the developing world, the public’s knowledge of science can have a dramatic effect on the health of the general population. Moreover, it is necessary to interest young people in science in order to create the next generation of researchers. This session will discuss innovative and successful projects to communicate science to the public in Latin America and the Caribbean. Presenters will give overviews of their projects, discussing issues such as planning, funding, effectiveness and lessons learned. back to top

Collaborations to Improve the Scientific Enterprise in Southern and Eastern Africa
Organized and presented by: Linda Mantel, Past-President, Association for Women in Science (AWIS); Nelson Torto, Secretary General, Southern and Eastern Africa Network of Analytical Chemists (SEANAC)

Scientists in southern and eastern Africa have been working in both formal and informal collaborations to improve teaching, research, and public understanding of science. The number of scientists, both male and female, is increasing. Some of these new scientists have been educated in their home countries, others in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Infrastructure to support science varies from weak to strong, depending upon local economies and political values. Science education in secondary and tertiary schools also ranges from comprehensive to “catch-up”. A number of funded programs are available to support comprehensive development of the scientific enterprise. This session will focus on two such programs: the Education for Democracy and Development Initiative (EDDI) sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Southern and Eastern Africa Network of Analytical Chemists (SEANAC). Both of these are housed at the University of Botswana, in Gaborone, Botswana, and involve faculty from many areas of science. Speakers will review these programs, their goals and progress, successes and difficulties, and the lessons learned that could be translated to other regions to strengthen scientific collaboration. back to top

A Model for Trans-Boundary Marine Science Cooperation (Part II): Butterflyfish and the Need for a Gulf of Aqaba Research Consortium
Organized by: Michael Crosby, Executive Director, U.S. National Science Board
Presented by: Avi Baranes, Director, Interuniversity Institute for Marine Sciences, Eilat; Bilal Al Bashir, Commissioner for the Environment, Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority
Non-presenting co-authors: Maroof Khalaf, Marine Science Station; Michael Ottolenghi, Scientific Director, Interuniversity Institute of Eilat. back to top

New Science & Engineering Capacities for Environmental Health & Risk Communication
Organized by: United States-Mexico Foundation for Science (FUMEC)
Presented by: Robyn Gilden, Outreach Program Manager, University of Maryland Baltimore, School of Nursing; Ana Rosa Moreno, Coordinator of the Environmental Health Program, FUMEC

When two countries share a border, they need to have adequate preparedness at the institutional level as well as population's awareness and response capacity, to deal with environmental emergencies that can be generated by contamination, industrial events or infectious diseases, among others. Bi-national collaboration promoted by the Agency of Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the U.S. Mexico Foundation for Science, involving academic and public service institutions from both countries, has started to build up in areas such as human resources training to strengthen the capacities of professionals of environmental health. However, more involvement is required to conduct the necessary research to effectively communicate potential risks and secure a prompt and effective answer to environmental health contingencies. back to top

California and Mexico: Education, Science & Technology
Organized by: Susan Hackwood, Executive Director, California Council on Science & Technology
Presenters: Salvador Avila Cobo, Associate Researcher, Stanford University; Roberto Sánchez-Rodríguez, Director, University of California Institute for Mexico and the United States (UC MEXUS) and Professor Environmental Studies, University of California, Riverside. back to top

U.S. - Mexico Collaboration in K-12 Science Education
Organized by: FUMEC
Presented by: Anders Hedberg, Director, Center for Science Education, Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute; Mike Klentschy, Superintendent of Schools, El Centro School District and Principal Researcher, the Valle Imperial Project in Science; Leopoldo López, Corporate Community Development, Grupo Peñoles

The speakers will explore successful mechanisms of collaboration between scientists, businessmen and teachers in promoting K-12 Science Education. There is a growing awareness among the business community to get involved in fostering the use of “hands-on inquiry centered systems" in science education, not only in terms of financial support, but also as promoters of educational change at the state and federal educational systems. They recognize the importance of having a workforce educated to be profoundly curious, where people view themselves as active learners, able to question and to search for better explanations, capable of team work, with high self esteem, and willing to try new processes to prove their ideas. Scientists are also participating more in curriculum design and getting directly involved in educational experiences. Examples of existing schemes of U.S. - Mexico collaboration will be presented along with opportunities to expand them in the near future. back to top

Human Capacity Building to Strengthen the Mexican Long Term Ecological Research Network (LTER) through a Collaborative Research Agenda with the U.S. LTER Network
Organized by: Manuel Maass, Center for Ecosystem Research, UNAM
Presented by: Manuel Maass and Gerardo Ceballos (Mexican LTER); James Vose, Principle Investigator, Coweeta LTER; Robert Waide, Executive Director, LTER Network Office, New Mexico

The Long Term Ecological Research program (LTER) in the United States was established specifically to support and finance scientific research oriented to address questions at larger spatial scales, more appropriate to the investigation of many ecological processes. It is currently in its 23rd year of operation and it represents a collaborative effort of more than 1,100 scientists from 24 research sites spread all over the U.S., sharing expertise, data and a common mission. The success of this program and the lack of similar studies across a diversity of ecological zones stimulated the recent establishment of the International Long Term Ecological Research program, currently embracing 25 country networks. Mexico joined last year this international effort and is currently developing strategies to grow and strengthen its LTER network. The main objective of this collaborative program is to strengthen the Mexican LTER network by fostering scientific collaboration between the U.S. and Mexican LTER networks.


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