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Dr. Álvaro Sobrinho

Businessman, philanthropist and trustee of the Planet Earth Institute

Dr Álvaro Sobrinho is a prominent businessman and philanthropist, and trustee of the Planet Earth Institute, an NGO working for the ‘scientific independence of Africa’. Find more information on Dr Sobrinho’s website ( and the Planet Earth Institute's website ( and follow him on Twitter.

Delivering Sustainable Transport In Africa's Cities

Africa's Cities: Opening Doors to the World, a lack of quality and cost-efficient transportation is one of the main challenges facing the continent's urban centres. Many African cities' mass transit relies on informal minibus systems whose low passenger capacity prevents them from achieving economies of scale, and small taxis.
08/05/2017 14:14 BST

Achieving Sustainable Industrialisation In Africa

Ultimately, bold expansion of renewable energy can go a long way to fostering sustainable and inclusive industrialisation in Africa. I call on private sector companies to join hands with African governments, universities and the broader civil society to address this challenge.
23/11/2016 13:25 GMT

Empowering Africa's Future Scientific Leaders

As the biggest source of job creation and a recognised engine of growth, I believe that private sector companies can partner with African countries to create the next generation of local scientific leaders. First of all, they can partner with local universities to deliver high-quality and industry-relevant STEM curricula.
12/09/2016 15:46 BST

An Open Letter to the Next UN Secretary General

I would like to congratulate you on your election, especially against such an experienced and talented group of candidates. I wish you well in maintaining the United Nations' impact as one of the leading global institutions, and its role in promoting international cooperation on the most important issues facing humanity...
08/07/2016 15:02 BST

Supporting the Development of Research Leaders in Africa

By supporting this programme, companies are helping to build the hard and soft infrastructure they need to operate on the continent. This programme will also help counter the brain drain that is stripping our countries of their best and brightest.
11/04/2016 13:11 BST

Africa Needs More Female Scientific Leaders

Persistent gender bias also explains the low proportions of women in the highest echelons of science and technology. A particularly damaging stereotype is the 'maternal wall', which stems from expectations that a woman's job performance will be affected by her taking time off to have children, or absences from work to take care of her family.
07/03/2016 17:34 GMT

Post COP21: Africa and Climate Change

Ultimately, Africa's great vulnerability to the effects of climate change demands a multi-stakeholder response. Given their financial resources and scale, private sector companies can be vital partners to African countries by scaling up investment in renewable energy, boosting climate finance, and decarbonising their own operations.
18/01/2016 12:37 GMT

South Korea: A True Development Success Story

It was my great pleasure to be invited to South Korea by the World Bank and the Korea Development Institute (KDI) for a two-day workshop. Part of a partnership between eight African governments and the Republic of Korea, the event allowed attendees to share ideas for Korea-Africa cooperation, and to learn from Korea's astonishing development experience.
26/10/2015 12:03 GMT

Africa's Scientific Independence: No More Business as Usual

Despite Africa's impressive economic growth, there remains a damaging divide between business and scientific communities. Technical knowledge is not keeping pace with economic growth and businesses often bemoan the lack of local candidates with scientific and technological competences.
20/07/2015 12:29 BST

An Open Letter to the Next President of the African Development Bank

I would like to congratulate you on your election, especially amongst such an experienced and talented field. I wish you well in continuing to raise the influence and impact of the Bank as Africa's pre-eminent financial institution, and in playing its part in the continent's sustainable and inclusive growth.
15/04/2015 11:54 BST

Unleashing Africa's Data Revolutionaries

Through local partnerships and training programmes in rural villages, the project will develop a series of data collection and sharing platforms to improve yield and reduce food waste.
02/03/2015 15:35 GMT