In order to promote the quality of the dialogue on the new roles and challenges of scientific knowledge within today's global society, in partnership with the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and the Hungarian Government, UNESCO and ICSU organised the first World Conference on Science in Budapest, Hungary in 1999. As then State Secretary responsible for Science and Education in Hungary, it was my honourable task to endorse the initiative of UNESCO and ICSU as an unique endeavour to provide scientists and science policy makers with a new global platform for discussing vital issues of common interest.
Encouraged by the success of the World Conference on Science, the Hungarian Academy of Sciences initiated a series of events called World Science Forum taking place biannually in Budapest. As in 2001 UNESCO assigned the day of the 10th of November to serve as "World Science Day", a day dedicated to science and scientists, biannual World Science Fora take place in Budapest on and around the World Science Days of every odd year.
The first World Science Forum, focusing on "Knowledge and Society", took place from 8 through 10 November 2003, the second World Science Forum on "Knowledge, Ethics and Responsibility" was held from 10 through 12 November 2005, whereas the third one lasted from 8 through 10 November 2007 and focused on "Investing in Knowledge: Investing in the Future".
Well over 1200 scientists, politicians, decision makers from all over the world have participated in the work of the past World Science Fora, making them unique and highly diverse events. The Summaries, brochures as well as the video-archives of the previous Fora can be accessed on this web site.
It is my pleasure to announce the Fourth World Science Forum, organised by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in partnership with UNESCO and ICSU to be held in Budapest on 5-7 November 2009. The forthcoming Forum - focusing on "Knowledge and Future" - will not only mark the tenth anniversary of the first World Conference on Science, but will also look forward and give us a strategic vision of the future of science in the global society of the 21st century.
President of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences
President of World Science Forum - Budapest 2009