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Sudan seeks a science revival

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Science  15 Dec 2017:
Vol. 358, Issue 6369, pp. 1369
DOI: 10.1126/science.358.6369.1369

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Summary

In October, the U.S. government lifted economic sanctions on Sudan. Applied in the 1990s, the sanctions did not explicitly target science. But by prohibiting bank transfers to the African nation and placing stringent controls on exports of materials and equipment to the country, the sanctions essentially severed Sudanese science from international partnerships and funding. They also forced scientists in the Sudanese diaspora in the United States to run an almost impossible gauntlet to get permission to conduct research in their home country. Now, émigré scientists are eager to resume collaborations in areas where Sudan has much to offer, among them infectious diseases, archaeology, and ethnology. And Sudan's own diminished ranks of scientists hope to rebuild a scientific establishment that was once among Africa's strongest.

  • * Linda Nordling is a journalist in Cape Town, South Africa.