May 2020 Newsletter
Dear Friends,

We hope our May newsletter finds you all healthy and safe, and managing as well as possible.
We, on our part, welcome the month of June with great excitement, because it is the month we hold our first electronic Annual General Meeting (e-AGM), as well as the virtual Young Scientist International Conference towards the end of the month - a truly historic moment for us! Preparations are past fever peak, and the signature GYA AGM buzz is already beginning to be felt on our social media and e-AGM app. The new members have just completed their new member workshop, and virtual meet-ups are being set up in earnest for the coming weeks.

Aside from our upcoming e-AGM and International Conference, we're proud to share that the GYA was invited to contribute to three new statements released by the G7 Science Academies. This really reinforces the global perspective of young researchers in finding solutions for global challenges.

This month we also present news from the Women in Science working group's new publication offering advice on how to cope with the COVID-19 lockdown, as well as the usual news from members and alumni.

We wish you happy reading, and above all: stay safe!

Connie Nshemereirwe (Actualise Africa, Uganda) and Koen Vermeir (CNRS, France)
On behalf of the GYA Executive Committee
Beate Wagner (Managing Director)
On behalf of the GYA Office
GYA e-Annual General Meeting and e-Conference updates

Virtual Annual General Meeting and Conference

The rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus worldwide has resulted in an Executive Committee decision to not hold the planned in-person AGM and International Conference this year in Kolkata, India. Instead, An e-Annual General Meeting will take place for GYA members and alumni from 8-12 June, while a public conference will take place 29 June to 10 July.

“Heal the Earth: Sustainable Development Goals in a Changing World”: International Conference of Young Scientists – virtual meeting from 29 June to 10 July

Thank you to the many friends of the GYA who have sent video greetings and messages for the upcoming conference! If you have questions about your video, contact GYA Executive Committee member Robert Lepenies ( and cc Kevin Bolte (  
The 2020 International Conference of Young Scientists topic “Heal the Earth: Sustainable Development Goals in a Changing World” is as urgent today as it was three months ago. GYA members are working hard to assemble an amazing e-Conference, and invitations will be distributed soon.
All news and information on the 2020 e-AGM and e-Conference “Heal the Earth” can be found on the International Conference and AGM website.

GYA News

GYA contributes to three new G-Science Academies statements

Read more here.

New GYA members participate in first virtual science leadership workshop

More information here.

North-South Interdisciplinary Grant 2019/20 Interim report on reducing exposure to urban air pollution

Read more here.

COVID-19 in Latin America webinar video and report available

Read more here.

Open Science Policy Platform releases final report

Read more here.

Readings of interest

Medications should be prescribed by doctors, not the president

GYA Advisory Board member
Luiz Davidovich discusses politics and
the pandemic.

Read more here.

Leave your thoughts on GYA News here

News from Our Members and Alumni

GYA member Abdalhadi Alijla (Varieties of Democracy Institute,Gothenburg University, Sweden) has been appointed as a member of the scientific committee of the International Science Council on “Urban Health and Wellbeing” for the period 2020-2023.

EC member Yoko Shimpuku (Hiroshima University, Japan) was appointed as the editor of a special issue of "Trends in the Sciences" in Japan. 

EC member Michael Saliba (University of Stuttgart, Forschungszentrum Jülich, Germany) has been accepted into to the World Economic Forum Young Scientists community. 

New GYA member Victorien Dougnon (University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin) has been selected to join the new IAP predatory journals working group. The group is also co-chaired by GYA alumnus Abdullah Shams bin Tariq (University of Rajshahi, Bangladesh).

Cristina Blanco Sío-López (University of Pittsburgh, United States) gave the 2020 Model EU Keynote Address at the European Studies Center (ESC) of the University of Pittsburgh. She also acted as Discussant at the Virtual Film Screening and Round-Table Discussion on "The Silence of Others" within the 2020 ESC's Year of Memory and Politics Series.

GYA alumna Olanike Adeyemo (University of Ibadan, Nigeria) has won the Scientist of the Year 2020 Award from the International Achievements Research Centre, Chicago, Illinois, USA. More information is available here.

GYA alumnus Marc Creus (Switzerland) has been elected as the President of the Advisory Council of the Swiss Young Academy, which was founded in December 2019.

Please use this form to send us your stories and accomplishments - we'll include them in social media and in the newsletter!
GYA Activities

Working Group and Strategic Project highlights

Women in Science working group releases publication offering advice for COVID-19 lockdown

The publication is available here.

First #GYAEnergy Initiative Webinar

EC member Michael Saliba (University of Stuttgart, Forschungszentrum Jülich, Germany) and GYA alumnus Javier García-Martínez (University of Alicante, Spain) are organising a webinar on "The Future of Energy: A Global Conversation", to launch the GYAEnergy Initiative. Modern society, as we know it, was made possible only through the consumption of vast amounts of energy. We now consume 100 times more energy than 100 years ago and a significantly increased energy demand is projected for the coming decades. This is not sustainable and threatens the very foundation of humankind. Thus, the GYA invites you to the launch of the #GYAenergy initiative by attending our online meeting on Friday, 5 June 2020, from 11:00 to 13:00 UTC.
Register for the event here with world-renowned experts on solar energy, Professor Michael Grätzel (EPFL, Switzerland) and on battery storage, Professor Clare Grey (Cambridge, UK).
National Young Academies

German Junge Akademie celebrates 20th Anniversary

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all celebrations have now been moved online. As part of their celebrations, they are also hosting the 2020 Meeting of European Young Academies on 4-5 July 2020. This too has now been transformed into a virtual meeting.

More information is available here.



The Future of Independent Science Advice in the EU Ecosystem: How to make sure that research synthesis reports are read?”

On 27 May 2020, the Young Academy Finland (YAF) and the Belgian Young Academy co-organised a webinar on “The Future of Independent Science Advice in the EU Ecosystem: How to make sure that research synthesis reports are read?”. The event was facilitated and moderated by Kaskas Media, and included participants from young academies, governments, European Union bodies and universities. More information is available here.

First member cohort selected for the Swiss Young Academy

The first 29 members for the Swiss Young Academy (established in December 2019) have now been selected. More information is available here.
NYAs and COVID-19

Call for contributions to New Voices in Global Health 2020

The GYA is looking for 4–6 contributions from its members, and members of NYAs, on “Perspectives and responses of young scientists to the coronavirus pandemic” for an interactive New Voices in Global Health session at the World Health Summit 2020 in October. New Voices in Global Health is an initiative by the World Health Summit, and since 2019 has been organised in partnership with the GYA, to promote the active participation of young researchers at the summit.
The deadline for applications is 8 June 2020. For details on the call, and how to apply, please see the call here.


GYA's COVID-19 repository

The GYA has established a page on our website ( to act as a repository for young academies to link their work on COVID-19. This includes any statements or information dissemination activities, initiatives to support scientists to coordinate and facilitate institutions or governments. Please contact or tweet with the hashtag #covid19ya if you want to share what your academy is doing, or want to contact other young academies for joint activities, or an exchange of experience and best practices.


NYA Updates - spread the news!

If you have any news or updates regarding your NYA, please email Anna-Maria Gramatté.

All European Academies (allea) releases climate change education report

Climate Change Education initiatives in addition to looking at causes of climate change need to expand to focus more on mitigation and adaptation, and help students understand that mitigation is not only crucial for future generations but is also essential for current disadvantaged populations on whom climate change is having the biggest impact.
This document was prepared by ALLEA’s Science Education Working Group and contains recommendations based on an online survey of existing initiatives complemented by educational research literature and the expertise of the scholars who conducted this work.
Download the report here.

Network of African Science Academies releases COVID-19 statement

The statement (available here) aims to articulate priorities for action that are worth considering so as to prepare for, control and mitigate the health consequences of COVID-19 in Africa and provide an impetus for change.
Upcoming events

Climate Nexus Conference 2020

The First International Conference on "Climate Nexus Perspectives: Water, Food and Biodiversity 2020", will be held 4-5 June 2020, and will take place online due to the COVID-19 Crisis.
The conference is organised by the Research Team "Environment and Natural Resources Management" of the Khenifra Higher School of Technology, Morocco. GYA member Lahcen El Youssfi (Sultane Moulay Slimane University, Morocco) is one of the main organisers.
The conference will focus on the intersections between the crisis related to the climate as well as the crisis related to biodiversity, water and food security, suggesting that these are not separate environmental and social issues, but rather a global crisis of ecological systems requiring an integrated response.

The Conference Program is available here. More information is available on the website here.
3-4 June 2020 ALLEA General Assembly - CANCELLED
8-12 June 2020 2020 GYA e-Annual General Meeting, online
16 June 2020 ALLEA GYA Workshop on research assessment, Brussels, Belgium - POSTPONED
29 June to
10 July 2020
2020 GYA International e-Conference, online
4-5 July 2020 2020 European Young Academies Meeting - NOW VIRTUAL
21-25 August 2020 Africa Science Leadership Programme, Pretoria, South Africa
10-12 September 2020 2nd GYA Research Leadership Workshop, Oxford, United Kingdom - POSTPONED TO 9-11 SEPTEMBER 2021
15-16 September 2020 4th International Conference on Science Advice to Government, Montreal, Canada - MOVED TO 18-21 APRIL 2021
21-23 September 2020 CILAC - The Open Science Forum for Latin American and the Caribbean, Buenos Aires, Argentina - MOVED TO APRIL 2021
25-29 August 2020 70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting, Lake Constance, Germany - POSTPONED UNTIL AUGUST 2021

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