It is an honour and pride for Pakistan as well as the region of Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) that the Pakistani Eminent Scientist and President ECO Science Foundation (ECOSF) Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro has been appointed as Member of Governing Board of International Science, Technology and Innovation Centre for South-South Cooperation Under the Auspices of UNESCO (ISTIC) based at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Prof. Soomro accepted the honour and attended the 7th Governing Board meeting of ISTIC held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on September 8, 2014.

Prof. Soomro is a Gold Medalist with PhD on Quid-e-Azam Scholorship from the University of Reading, UK in 1987. He has won numerous awards and honours including the prestigious award of the “Order of Acadmic Palms” by the Republic of France. He has served as Professor, researcher, Director General of Pakistan Museum of Natural History and Chairman of Pakistan Science Foundation. He has also served the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN as an IPM Expert and Programme Coordinator for Pakistan for over four years. So far, he has six industrial Patents and 187 publications to his credit. He also travels frequently in the region for lecturing on various SandT topics.

Other Eminent Scientists as members of the ISTIC Governing Board include Prof. Tan Sri Zakri Abdul Hamid, the Advisor to the Prime Minister of Malaysia on Science, Technology and Innovation and Chairperson of Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), Dr. Muhammad Hassan, Co-Chair of Inter Academy Panel, Dr. Mustafa Al-Tayeb, President of Future University Sudan, Dr. Park Youngah President KISTEP, South Korea, Prof. Crispus M. Kiamba, University of Nairobi, Kenya, Dr. Naji M. Al-Mutairi, Director General, Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research, Assistant Director General UNESCO and Permanent Secretary Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation Malaysia.

It is pertinent to mention that ISTIC was established in year 2006 to develop and implement a programme for South-South cooperation in science and technology with the objective of facilitating the integration of a developmental approach into national science and technology and innovation policies, capacity building in science and technology through providing policy advice and exchange of experience and best practices, and creating a problem solving network of centres of excellence in developing countries as well as supporting the exchange of students, researchers, scientists and technologists among developing countries.

As reflected by its name, the Centre acts as an international platform for South-South cooperation in science, technology and innovation and makes use of the network of the G77 plus China and the Organization of the Islamic Conference. The overall goal of the Centre is to increase in the capacity for management of science, technology and innovation throughout developing countries.

It is worth mentioning that ISTIC and ECOSF have recently signed MoU for cooperation which will facilitate the scientific community of 10 ECO member states viz. Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Republic of Azerbaijan, Islamic Republic of Iran, Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Republic of Turkey, Republic of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Republic of Uzbekistan through ECO Science Foundation.

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