Prof. Turner Timinipre Isoun was Nigeria’s Federal Minister of Science and Technology from October 2000 through May 2007.
He was driven by a passion and sense of urgency that Nigeria must harness all its resources and use science, technology and innovation (STI) to enhance human well-being. During his tenure, he initiated policies that promoted modern science, technology and innovation for the enhancement of integrated resource utilization and human capacity development. At the same time, he guided policy implementation of key programme areas of high-technology and construction of significant infrastructure to promote programme sustainability by subsequent administrations. As Minister, he worked not only with Agencies within the Ministry of Science and Technology, but also with other Ministries, and with the private sector for the purpose of finding ways to ‘do things differently’, through applying STI for propelling Nigeria’s development forward.
Before becoming Minister, Prof. Isoun had a meritorious career as a university professor and research scientist. He obtained his degrees (B.Sc. (Hons), DVM, and Ph.D.) from Michigan State University, USA.
Professor Isoun has been
• Member of the Board of Trustees of the African Technology Policy Studies Network (ATPS),
• Treasurer of the African Academy of Science (AAS),
• Founding Editor of the African Academy of Sciences Journal, Discovery and Innovation (D&I),
• Member of the Nigerian Academy of Science (NAS), and the
• Pioneer Vice Chancellor (President) of Nigeria’s first university of science and technology
(the Rivers State University of Science and Technology) .
Dr. Miriam (Forbes) Isoun, was one of the founders (in 1992) of the Niger Delta Wetlands Centre (NDWC). As the Executive Director, she has focused the NGO’s activities for achieving its mission to improve the quality of life of the people of the Niger Delta through:
• Natural resource management and biodiversity conservation.
• Applications of modern science and technology (e.g. renewable energies, ICT, biotechnology and mitigation of climate change) and
• Targeted, site-specific development projects and capacity building.
She received a B.Sc. and M.Sc. from Michigan State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Ibadan where she was a lecturer and carried out research in cell and molecular biology until her retirement from academics.
Prof. Turner Isoun and his wife, Miriam, have spent the past fifty years of their working life in Nigeria in academics, public service and non-profit development institutions.