DAY 1 (MARCH 8, 2016)

08:10 – 09:45


10:10 – 11:30

  • Cultural presentation
  • Thierry Zomahoun
  • Joachim Rogall
  • Flavia Schlegel
  • Ban Ki Moon (written remarks)
  • NEF Viral Video
  • President Paul Kagame
  • President Macky Sall

11:30 – 12:30

  • NEF Presidential Panel
    Cultivating STEM Talent for Tomorrow’s Global Challenges
  • Government, educational and industrial leaders are working together to build the STEM talent pipeline needed to solve global problems. Success in cultivating the next generation of STEM talent depends on collaboration among many stakeholders. There is a need to train the next generation of scientists and technologists to sustain growth in emerging economies. There is also a need for businesses and the private sector to invest in STEM talent to solve complex challenges.

    This panel will initiate a global conversation examining how African countries can create a strong STEM ecosystem to solve the global challenges of society with science-based solutions and create incentives to attract and retain African STEM talent. The format is designed to encourage conversation across generations. The young representatives will formulate questions in advance for each Head of State and present them in a Q&A format. In the last 10 minutes, the best questions tweeted from the audience will be selected and presented to the Heads of State

  • Moderator – Didier Acouetey (Media Correspondent)
  • HE President Macky Sall (President, Senegal)
  • HE President Paul Kagame (President, Rwanda)
  • HE Minister Abiy Ahmed, representing the Head of State (Minister of Science and Technology, Ethiopia)
  • HE Minister Lahcen Daoudi, representing the Head of State (Minister of Higher Education and Research, Kingdom of Morocco)
  • HE Minister Jacques Fame Ndongo, representing the Head of State (Minister of Higher Education, Cameroon)
  • HE Minister Ogbonnaya Onu, representing the Head of State (Minister of Science and Technology, Nigeria)
  • NEF Fellows: Evelyn Gitau, Kommy Weldemariam, Amanda Weltman, Assane Gueye, Axel Ngonga
  • NEF Ambassadors: Esther Kunda (Rwanda), Mariamawit (Ethiopia), Vidushi (Mauritius), Charles (Rep. of Congo), Lelani (Namibia)

12:30 – 12:45

  • Ceremony On Stage
  • NEF Fellow Trophy Presentation
  • NEF Ambassador Photo
  • Transition Ceremony On-Stage

12:45 – 13:05

  • Presidential Tour of Exhibits

13:05 – 13:15

  • Presidential Press Point

12:45 – 14:15

  • Lunch

14:15 – 14:35

  • NEF Fellows Spotlight Session 1
  • Tolu Oni
  • Joseph Ben Geloun
  • Assane Gueye

14:35 – 14:50

  • NEF Global Gathering Lecture – Neil Turok
  • Connecting Science to Humanity – How humanity’s innate capacity for scientific progress is the key to human development

14:50 – 15:45

  • Plenary Panel 1: STEM and Development; Challenges and Opportunities
  • Opportunities and challenges abound in the quest to propel Africa into a leading member of the scientific community and the NEF was created to support this development. The session will set the stage for the Global Gathering event by inviting senior scientists to address the seven themes of the event. The speakers, comprised of scientists, policymakers and leading thinkers, will discuss the challenges and opportunities confronted in each thematic area.
  • Howard Alper
  • Mariéme Jamme
  • HE Minister Mary Teuw Niane
  • Tolu Oni
  • HE Minister Naledi Pandor
  • Paul Stoffels

15:45 – 16:05


16:05 – 17:00

  • Parallel Session 1: Driving the agenda for African women in STEM (If science is gender blind, where are the women?)
  • This session will promote an understanding of recent efforts to advance the Women in STEM Agenda in Africa. It will examine concrete examples of innovation across government, academia and industry by increasing the number of women in STEM. The panel will also examine the African Women in STEM Initiative (launched at the NEF) and insights into the emerging Agenda for African Women in STEM.
  • Opening Remarks – HE Minister Naledi Pandor
  • Moderator – Mpule Kwelagobe
  • France Córdova
  • Aminata Sall Diallo
  • Naswha Eassa
  • Seema Kumar
  • Kwadwo A. Sarpong

16:05 – 17:00

  • Parallel Session 2 – Science in Africa – Top Scientific Discoveries/Initiatives in Africa (Part I)
  • Africa’s Square Kilometer Array (SKA), among other exciting research work on the continent, is set to inspire a science boom on the continent. Other research work demonstrates that Africa’s science sector is fast evolving. This panel will look at contemporary scientific discoveries and initiatives in Africa and address the questions:
    • What are some of the cases of the leading scientific research happening in Africa today?
    • How are scientists in Africa meeting global challenges with their research?
  • Opening Remarks – Cheick Modibo Diarra
  • Moderator – Peter Tindemans
  • Samuel Achilefu
  • Bernie Fanaroff
  • Julie Makani
  • Molopheni Jackson Marakalala

16:05 – 17:00

  • Parallel Session 3 – Beyond Incubators and Accelerators: Where African High Tech Advances Meet Daily Challenges
  • Technology start-ups have often been looked to as the panacea for technology and entrepreneurship solutions to many of the challenges in daily life in Africa, from banking to mobility. This session will examine this assumption and discuss the examples of science-based research that formed the foundation of Africa’s start-up technology companies. The panel will address the questions:
    • What are examples of science-based research that turned into viable and commercialized products in Africa?
    • How can STEM research and capacity contribute ao a sustainable innovation ecosystem?
  • Moderator – Nick Perkins
  • Assane Gueye
  • Axel Ngonga
  • David Sengeh
  • Kommy Weldemariam

17:00 – 18:30

  • PASET Ministerial Meeting

19:30 – 21:30

  • NEF VIP Members Dinner