On the road to Tunis (March 25th to 27th, 2015)

Tunisia will host the 4th World Forum on Science and Democracy (WFSD) from 25 to 27 March 2015 (on the site of the El Manar University in Tunis), two years after a particularly rewarding experience in this country in the heart of a political, economic and social revolution. Emerging from this meeting in spring 2013, it was collectively decided that our platform of political dialogues between social movements, NGOs and research institutions had reached a level of maturity and sufficient recognition to join the World Social Forum (WSF). This will be the case in 2015.

This structural evolution is both a great opportunity and a challenge. We will confront our thoughts on the relation between science, technology, society and citizenship to other alternatives, issues and struggles, such as climate change, finance or education. This will require a work of acculturation to our problems upstream.

Since the call for a World Forum on Science and Democracy launched in 2007, a number of themes have crossed the different editions. We can mention the issues of responsibility of scientists, commons, responses to crises in higher education and research in different areas, control of emerging technologies, alternatives to dominant modes of research, diverse forms of knowledge, intellectual property and patentability.

Today, even if it can appear caricatural to mention it like that, these issues are more relevant than ever. They deserve further consideration in light of the experience and knowledge of the various stakeholders of the WFSD in their geographic, cultural and social diversity. Also this fourth edition will be an opportunity to discuss topics such as transitions, participatory research, citizen involvement in scientific and technological choices, the necessary reform of educational systems through the “science and society” prism.

We mentioned earlier the challenges we will face. Beyond political positions, we need to show methodological creativity to ensure that skilled participants and beginners can find their place in the space offered by the WFSD. The WFSD will provide an opportunity for the foreshadowing and development of partnerships and co-construction projects at the local, regional and international levels. To recap, the SDWF has been a catalyst for the implementation of important projects such as the network of civic universities to name it as an example.

We count on you to make the 4th SDWF a moment of learning and building / strengthening of initiatives to meet the challenges of our societies. We are listening to all thematic and methodological proposals that you will do to us. As we used to say: “The WFSD will be built and fed by the proposals and activities initiated by committed actors.”

Disponible en / Available in: French

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