AU-STRC was born out of the ashes of the Commission for Technical Cooperation in Africa (CCTA) which was established in 1950 together with the Scientific Council of Africa (CSA) by Belgium, France, Portugal, United Kingdom, Southern Rhodesia and South Africa. At an extraordinary session of The CCTA held in Accra in 1958, the Foundation for Mutual Assistance in Africa (FAMA) was created as an instrument for bilateral technical assistance. Ghana joined the CCTA in 1958 followed by Liberia and Guinea in 1959 and Cameroon in 1960. Seventeen other African Countries joined the CCTA in 1961. The headquarters of CCTA with the core of its secretariat was moved from London to Lagos in 1959.
In 1964, barely a year after the Organization of African Unity (OAU) Charter was signed, the founding fathers of the OAU unanimously resolved in Cairo, Egypt to assimilate The CCTA formally and gave it a new name: The Scientific, Technical and Research Commission (STRC). The OAU-STRC was born out of recognition
by the heads of states that real and sustainable social and economic development of the continent depended on innovative scientific and technological policies. The headquarters of STRC remained in Lagos, Nigeria while its sub-regional office for animal health continued its activities in Muguga and later in Nairobi, Kenya.
OAU-STRC had two permanent bodies: The Inter-African Bureau for Soils (BIS) and The Inter-African Phytosanitary Council (IAPSC). These bodies were moved from Paris to Bangui, Central African Republic, and from London to Yaounde, Cameroon respectively.
These placements remained the same for nearly twenty years when the Inter-African Bureau for Soils was moved from Bangui to Lagos
During the first 25 years of its existence (1964-1988) the AU-STRC excelled in the following areas:
Promotion of science and technology for development
Promotion of scientific and technological research
Initiation and implementation of projects
Capacity development in the areas of research, science and technology
Information exchange among scientists in Member States through networking
Collection and dissemination of information on research, scientific and technological matters
1988 - 2003
AU-STRC concentrated in the following:
Deal with all scientific and technical matters related to general development of Member States;
Promote training and exchange of scientific, technical and research manpower
Promote scientific policies for adoption by Member States and execute at their request joint programmes on scientific and technical research
Promote effective utilization of research results with a view to accelerating socioeconomic development of Member States;
Seek and obtain external financing for OAU projects of common interest to Member States sponsored by the OAU in the fields of science and technology;
Seek facilities for disseminating information to researchers in the field of science and technology in Africa;
Undertake scientific evaluation studies of natural resources of the continent .
2003 - Present
At present, our priority areas include:
Industrial and technological development including biotechnology and new, renewable energies and green technologies
Environmental and related natural resource sciences
Agriculture - agronomic research to attain food self-sufficiency and security
Forestry - forestry research in arid, semiarid and humid zones
Oceanography and fisheries
Medical research - utilization of African medicinal plants in improvement of health