About TWAS

The World Academy of Science (TWAS) for the Advancement of Science in developing countries is an autonomous international organization founded in 1983 in Trieste, Italy, by a distinguished group of scientists from the developing world under the leadership of Noble laureate Abdus Salam of Pakistan. It was officially launched as the “Third World Academy of Sciences” by the Secretary General of the United Nations in 1985.

TWAS’s mission is to  promote  scientific  capacity  and  excellence for  sustainable  development  in  the South.

The Academy’s membership consists of Fellows and Associate Fellows representing the world’s most  distinguished  scientists: Fellows are citizens of the South; Associate Fellows are  citizens  of  the  North who were either born in thc South or have made  significant contributions to the advancement of science in the South. At  present, TWAS currendy has 1,116 members from 90 countries, 73 of which are developing countries. Fellows living arid working in the South represent 85 percent of the membership.

In 1991, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) assumed responsibility for administering TWAS’s funds and staff. Since its inception, TWAS’s expenses have largely been covered by generous contributions from the Italian government. In ]anuary 2004, the Italian  government  passed  a law that ensures permanent funding tor the Academy’s operations. Representatives of the ltalian government and UNESCO sit on TWAS’s Steering Committee, which meets  annually to discuss  financial matters.

TWAS has established a few National Chapters in different countries. These Chapters meet to discuss issues of common concern including the role of sustainable development. The Chapters also enables scientists involved with TWAS Research Grants and Fellowship Programmes to link to their nation wider scientific communities.

TWAS has established 5 Regional Offices to enable to organise various programmes for the promotion of science in the developing worlds. These offices cover : (a) Latin American and Carribean region (b) East and South East Asia and Pacific region (c) Central and South Asia regions (d)Arab region and (e) Sub Saharan African region.