“The Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) aspires to be the apex organisation for science and scholarship in South Africa, recognised and connected both nationally and internationally.”

The Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) was inaugurated in May 1996 by the former President of South Africa and patron of the Academy, Nelson Mandela.

It was formed in response to the need for an academy of science congruent with the dawn of democracy in South Africa – activist in its mission of using science for the benefit of society.

The mandate of the Academy encompasses all fields of scientific enquiry and it includes the full diversity of South Africa’s distinguished scientists. The Parliament of South Africa passed the Academy of Science of South Africa Act (Act 67 of 2001), as amended, which came into operation in May 2002.

ASSAf is the official national Academy of Science of South Africa and represents the country in the international community of science academies. Since its inception, ASSAf has grown from a small, emergent organisation to a well-established academy.

Through its Membership which represents the collective voice of the most active scholars in all fields of scholarly enquiry, ASSAf aims to generate evidence-based solutions to national problems.

The mission of the Academy is to:

  • Recognise scholarly achievement and excellence in the application of scientific thinking for the benefit of society;
  • Mobilise Members to ensure that they are available to contribute their expertise in the service of society;
  • Conduct systematic and evidence-based studies on issues of national importance, producing authoritative reports that have significant impact on policy-making;
  • Promote the development of an indigenous system of South African research publications, increasing their quality, visibility, accessibility and impact;
  • Publish science-focused periodicals that will showcase the best of southern African research to a wide national and international audience;
  • Develop productive partnerships with national, regional and international organisations with a view to building our capacity in science and its application within the National System of Innovation (NSI);
  • Create diversified sources of funding for sustainable functioning and growth of a national academy;
  • Communicate effectively with relevant stakeholders through various media and fora.
  • President: Jonathan Jansen
  • Vice President: Brenda Wingfield
  • Vice President: Nyameko Barney Pityana
  • General Secretary: Sabiha Essack
  • Treasurer: Thomas Eugene Cloetek

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