GYA Executive Committee member Sandra Lopez (Panama), members Daniel Limonta (Cuba) and Shalini Arya (Brazil / India), and GloSYS Africa Research Assistant Matt Keane attended the ‘Science in Latin America: Today and Tomorrow’ conference in Rio de Janeiro 27-29 November 2019.

The conference was hosted by the Brazilian Academy of Sciences (BAS), The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) and the TWAS Young Affiliates Network (TWAS-TYAN), and focussed on advancing the development of research in the LAC region, including showcasing the research pursuits of early career researchers (ECRs). Distinguished leaders in science in the LAC region opened the conference, including Luiz Davidovich, President of BAS and GYA Advisory Board Member, and Manuel Limonta, Director of the International Science Council LAC Region.

Sandra and Matt opened discussions about the realities of being an ECR by describing the vision and strategic goals of the GYA, and the GYA’s push to launch a Global State of Young Scientists (GloSYS) project in the LAC region. The presentation generated a lot of discussion that led organically into a plenary discussion about the role of TYAN in the LAC region, including the opportunities and challenges of ECRs in the region. There was mutual agreement that a GloSYS LAC project could substantiate these discussions and help stimulate change by backing them with rigorous research, and that the GYA could be instrumental in helping the development of NYAs in the region. Daniel also presented his research on the persistence of Zika virus in human fetuses.

All the GYA attendees look forward to taking these preliminary discussions forward, with the view of formally collaborating on strategic projects with BAS, TWAS and TWAS-TYAN in the LAC region.