Dr. Calestous Juma; A World Renowned Leader in Biotechnology & Professor of International Development at Harvard
Professor Calestous Juma born in June 9, 1953 in Kenya is a world renowned professor and leader in policy research on biotechnology who has directed the high profiled International Diffusion of Biotechnology Program of the International Federation of Institutes of Advanced Studies. Currently Prof. Juma is the Professor of the Practice of International Development at Harvard Kennedy School. He also serves as the Belfer Center’s Science, Technology and Globalization Project, Director.
Prof. Juma is also world renowned as an authoritative professor in the application of technology and science to sustainable development. He formerly served as the Executive Secretary to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and is a Founding Director to the African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS) based in Nairobi, Kenya.
Taking a look at his academic background, the Calestous Juma deserves the Prof. title by all standards. Juma holds a PhD is Science and Technology Policy Studies. Prof. Juma has also been elected to various high profiled scientific academies such as the US National Academy of Sciences, UK Royal Academy of Engineering, Royal Society of London and the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World. He is also part of the advisory team to various high profiled organizations like the United Nations (UN), African Union (AU) and individual governments. For instance he prepared a popular read report, Freedom to Innovate for the African Union.
His career and academic background has made him a valuable asset towards significant contributions to the understanding of the dynamic roles played by technology and innovation in transforming developing countries’ economies. He founded the first independent African policy research institution in 1988, the African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS) that is meant to boost the African research in technological developments.
Prof. Juma is also a world leader when it comes to policy research in biotechnology. He directed the International Diffusion of Biotechnology Program for the International Federation of Institutes of Advanced Studies. Through his post as the Professor of the Practice of International Development at Harvard Kennedy School, Prof. Juma continues to demonstrate international leadership in training, research and outreach. In addition to providing high profiled policy framework advice to the UN, various governments and international organizations around the world on matters concerning innovation, technology and science.
He also co-chairs the African Panel on Modern Biotechnology of the AU. Prof. Juma also co-chairs the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) to which he officially released his publication, Freedom to Innovate: Biotechnology in Africa’s Development in January, 2008. He also spear headed a delegation of international experts in a program to outline ways in which science and technology can be applied in Millennium Development Goals implementation which came about as the result of the year 2000 UN Millennium Summit. To which he publish a report dubbed, Innovation: Applying Knowledge in Development, whose recommendations have been adapted by governments and organizations worldwide. This particular report has also become the standard reference guide to governments globally in assessing their programs and policies towards technological innovation development.
Prof. Juma has many other publications which due to time and space, Inno8tiv Magazine cannot exhaust here. For an in depth look at all of his publications click here. His research work has gone a long way in improving understanding on the role played by property rights in conservation. At one time, he served as the Executive Secretary of the Convention, where again he was a key asset in advancing usage of scientific knowledge in the conservation policy and practice. You can follow Professor Calestous Juma on Twitter @Calestous