Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South

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Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS)
COMSATS Logo.svg
Formation 4–5 October 1994
Founder Abdus Salam
Type Intergovernmental Organization
Headquarters Islamabad, Pakistan
Membership 21 Countries from Asia, Africa and Latin America
Executive Director Imtinan Elahi Qureshi

The Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS) is an intergovernmental organization based in Islamabad, Pakistan. The commission, founded in 1994 by Dr. Abdus Salam, aims to achieve sustainable development in developing countries through the use of science and technology.[1] COMSATS has 21 member countries in three continents and funds 16 educational institutions,[2][3] including Pakistan's COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT).[4][5] The current executive director of COMSATS is Imtinan Elahi Qureshi.[2]


The organization was conceived by the Nobel laureate Abdus Salam, as the Third World Academy of Sciences on the 4–5 October 1994. During that time, representatives from 36 countries met in Islamabad to discuss the establishment of COMSATS. Attendees of the meeting included various ministers, diplomats from Islamabad, and delegates from other organizations, such as UNESCO and the World Bank.[citation needed] The inaugural holder of the office of executive director was Dr. Hameed Ahmed Khan.[6]

In 1996, Global One (an international collaboration between France Telecom, Sprint Nextel, and Deutsche Telekom) announced a contract with COMSATS to provide Internet access across Pakistan,[7] and the commission now operates COMSATS Internet Services (CIS), an Internet service provider.[8] In fall 1999, the organization began offering Internet access to residents of Gilgit.[9] In 2005, a telehealth project initiated by COMSATS went into effect, hoping to increase access to health education in northern Pakistan. The program was aided by the Baltistan Health and Education Foundation as well as Canada's International Development Research Centre.[10]

In October 2010, during the fifth Islamic Conference of Ministers of Higher Education and Scientific Research, COMSATS extended the possibility of membership to 43 additional Muslim nations.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Wootton, Patil & Ho 2009, p. 242
  2. ^ a b c "COMSATS offers membership to Muslim countries". Associated Press of Pakistan (Associated Press of Pakistan). 20 October 2010. Retrieved 22 November 2010. 
  3. ^ Wootton, Patil & Ho 2009, pp. 242–243
  4. ^ "COMSATS to launch dual degree programme". Daily Times (Media Times Ltd.). 19 July 2010. Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  5. ^ Muhammad, Peer (11 November 2010). "Over 600 graduate from COMSATS". The Express Tribune (The Express Tribune News Network). Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  6. ^ "Health professionals’ network to be formed for tele-health promotion". Daily Times (Media Times Ltd.). 22 August 2007. Retrieved 22 November 2010. 
  7. ^ Polishuk 1996, p. 3
  8. ^ Wootton, Patil & Ho 2009, p. 244
  9. ^ Cook 2007, p. 185
  10. ^ Wootton, Patil & Ho 2009, p. 243

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