Image: David Ausserhofer for the Leopoldina
The national academies of the G7 and G20 countries provide scientific advice for the annual summits of Heads of State and Government. They prepare science-based recommendations related to topics on the summit agendas. In each case, the national academy of the host country takes the lead. After successfully coordinating policy advice for G7 summits, the Leopoldina took on this role for the first time with the newly created Science20-Dialogue during the German G20 Presidency in 2017.
Advising the annual G7 and G20 summits of Heads of State and Government is an important means to bring pooled scientific expertise into the political discourse. The national academies of the participating countries select items on the summit agenda for in-depth examination and publish their findings in joint statements prior to the summit. The joint statements are handed over to the respective G7 or G20 Presidency during a dedicated science conference.
Prior to the G7 summit in 2015, the science academies prepared joint statements under the leadership of the Leopoldina on antimicrobial resistance, tropical diseases and the future of the oceans. These statements were handed over to German Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel during a science conference of the G7 academies in Berlin. Previously, in 2007, the Leopoldina chaired the advisory process of the science academies in the run-up to the G8 summit in Heiligendamm, Germany. On that occasion, the science academies presented statements on sustainability, energy efficiency, climate protection, and intellectual property protection.
The G7 includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The European Union is also represented at all meetings. Between 1998 and 2014, G8 meetings were held with Russia as an additional member.
The German Federal Government has established a Science20-Dialogue during the German G20 Presidency, in order to strengthen the role of scientific expertise in the G20 format. For the G20 summit in Hamburg, the science academies of the G20 countries, under the leadership of the Leopoldina, prepared for the first time a joint statement on improving global health. It was handed over to the German Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel by the presidents of the science academies at the Science20-Dialogue Forum in Halle on March 22nd, 2017.
In addition to the G7 academies, the Science20 process includes science academies from Argentina, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, and Turkey.