Dear Fellow Researchers and Colleagues,
It gives me great pleasure to announce and extend an invitation to the 2nd AFRICAN CONFERENCE ON HEALTH EFFECTS OF ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS from the 4 - 7th November 2019, taking place at the conference centre on the new Future Africa campus at University of Pretoria, in Pretoria, South Africa. The Future Africa campus (http://www.futureafrica.science) is a new initiative that has been designed to revolve around a lifestyle of research excellence and collaboration and aims to transform the world through African research excellence. It is a place where researchers from all over the globe and Africa’s leading scientists and scholars are able to come together to leverage the benefits of transdisciplinary research to address the many challenges that face Africa and the world. This is an ideal location for a conference that seeks to foster interdisciplinary research, and expand academic networks.
The successful first conference resulted in “A call for action” published in Environmental Health Perspectives (https://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/EHP1774), addressing many unique challenges posed by environmental pollution in Africa. Identified knowledge gaps included limited information of EDC exposures in Africa, requiring well-designed research strategies. Challenges identified were a lack of resources for research and a lag in policy implementation, which slow down intervention strategies posing a challenge to future health in African communities.
It is necessary for us as Africans to protect the rich biodiversity and health of our environment and communities living on the continent, despite the challenges posed by war, droughts, poverty and malnutrition, a lack of basic health care, environmental degradation and pollution. Changes should start within Africa by Africans. However, to do this it is necessary to collaborate at a global level and work with international partners to address these pertinent issues and create a platform for research towards sustainable development. With this goal in mind, it is imperative to continue holding meetings of this nature to nurture collaborations to ensure that there is significant and measurable impacts on decreasing and preventing exposures to EDCs in order to improve human, animal and environmental health on our continent.
The Scientific Committee has put together a comprehensive programme comprising of a number of well-known international regional and local experts in the field of endocrine disruption.
The theme of the conference this year is “Sustainable approaches towards healthy African communities”. The programme will feature a range of topics addressing the background on EDC research, focus on sustainability of research, science to policy and new research on human, animal and environmental EDC exposures.
I would like to end off with a quote by Ban Ki-moon; ‘Saving our planet, lifting people out of poverty, advancing economic growth… these are one and the same fight. We must connect the dots between climate change, water scarcity, energy shortages, global health, food security and women’s empowerment. Solutions to one problem must be solutions for all.”
Please join us for a unique meeting to learn, discuss the future of EDC research in Africa and globally.
Natalie Aneck-Hahn (DTech)
Chairperson: Conference Organizing Committee
Director: Environmental Chemical Pollution and Health Research Unit, UP