Remembering the leading international-development scholar, Calestous Juma

13 July 2021

The Royal Society has published a memoir of Calestous Juma (1953-2017) written by Innogen Associate Professor Norman Clark.

Calestous Juma was internationally recognised for championing the use of science, technology and innovation for development. He founded Africa’s first science-policy think tank, African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS) in Nairobi, led major United Nations science initiatives, such as the Convention on Biological Diversity, and authored influential books including Innovation and Its Enemies (Oxford Univ. Press, 2016). The Kenyan professor at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, died in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on 15 December 2017, at the age of 64.

The biographical memoir collates information and photographs from Juma’s early years, training and work in both academia and science diplomacy. Its publication coincides with the launch of ‘Prof. Calestous Juma Lecture Series on Inclusive Knowledge and Innovation’ hosted by ACTS. The first seminar will take place on the 12 August 2021 and will bring together public and private sector experts and stakeholders to discuss how to re-ignite sustainable industrialization towards social and economic growth.

Calestous Juma’s memoir can be accessed here:

You can register for the first seminar in the series here:

The early death of Calestous Juma was a tragic loss. He was an incredible role model and strongly supported the setting up of Innogen,” says Prof. David Wield, Professor of Innovation and Development at The Open University and co-Director of Innogen.

In 2019, The Calestous Juma Legacy Foundation was created to advance economic transformation and sustainable development in Kenya, and ultimately in Africa more broadly, through the use of science and technological innovation. The Foundation’s primary goal is to help local communities develop and implement innovative solutions to health, educational, food security, environmental, and employment challenges identified by local experts and community members. It will focus its work initially in and around Calestous Juma’s hometown, Port Victoria, a small town in rural Western Kenya.

You can follow The Calestous Juma Legacy Foundation on Twitter: @calestouslegacy LinkedIn: CJLF