Cooperation in Science in a Multilateral World

Falling Walls Circle Tables are lending the spotlight to world-leading scientists, science strategists and policy-makers from academia, business and politics discuss how we can apply science, research and innovation to get the world moving again.

The Covid-19 pandemic has made clear the vital importance of both science and international diplomacy. But we have simultaneously seen that science doesn’t always affect policy or international cooperation.

The coronavirus is just one symptom of broader challenges: from global health to environmental destruction. The hope is that the last months will teach us valuable lessons for other crises, ensuring that scientists have seats at the table, while forging collaborations between nations.

We have seen that science has the power to build bridges between nations – in spite of both the virus and international tensions. Cooperation in science is not only important for research, but also society at large. Multilateral collaboration can make research and development more efficient, through shared talent and resources.

Such international cooperation in science must be underpinned by a shared respect for facts, which has been lacking in the leadership of many countries. The panel shared an optimism that going forward under President Biden, America will play a renewed role on the international stage.