The MSI is an international initiative designed to build capacity in modern science and engineering. Highly adaptable to circumstances, the MSI has achieved its mission through a variety of vehicles, among them competitively chosen centers or networks of excellence in scientific research and training.
While MSI projects have varied in format according to the strengths and needs of the countries where they are located, they share these essential features: excellence; autonomy; linkages to other institutions, the private sector, government and one another; leaders of major scientific stature and proven leadership ability; a training component; and opportunities for scientists to work in their home countries and to collaborate with colleagues around the world.
All MSI projects were designed by local scientists and governments, usually with the active involvement of both the Science Initiative Group (SIG) and The World Bank. The Venezuelan MSI was implemented by the Bank without SIG's participation, and the African Mathematics MSI (AMMSI) was developed by members of the African mathematics community in coordination with SIG and is supported by foundation grants.
SIG was involved with the MSI from 1999 to 2012, by which time two MSI’s were running independently (Chile and AMMSI), one had evolved into a new initiative (Brazil), three had concluded (Mexico, Venezuela, Uganda), one would-be MSI became something else (Bangladesh), and plans for one had stalled (Vietnam). Click here for details.