The hard truth is that Pakistan, despite being a country with nuclear capabilities, is one where a fraction of the population still believes that a car can be powered purely by water! One where Polio vaccinations are still viewed as a Western plot to sterilize Muslim populations! Where even in the face of a serious water supply disaster, consensus on whether dams are necessary for our survival has not been reached. There are still debates going on concerning whether climate change is even a real problem or not? These arguments may not be indicators to determine the actual state of science literacy in Pakistan, but unfortunately one thing is certain: science literacy is in a terrible state. Simply because we have not put due emphasis on the role of Science and Technology (S&T), particularly in terms of policy making and its implementation in the country. There is no denying the fact that the nations which take their decisions while ignoring science will be doomed in the long run. Consider, for example, the policy questions for Pakistan pertaining to whether the country needs a few large dams, or hundreds of smaller dams for future sustainability? Whether we need to develop long term energy supplies based on imported LNG or local Coal or Renewables, or an integrated mix? How to get rid of the menace of malnutrition, given the existing socioeconomic conditions? How to increase agricultural productivity and so on? There is no simple “right answer” for each one of these questions, but our policy makers must have a certain level of scientific understanding to determine the potential harms and tradeoffs while making these decisions. All these matters are scientific and technical in nature, and require in depth scientific analysis to reach a solution that is not only appropriate, but also sustainable in the long run. Thus, the role of science and technology in this context is to promote a mindset of evidence-based decision making in the country. The support of the government and the political leadership is crucial to promote and advance Science and Technology development. Historically, governments all over the world have extended strong support for public missions, which have resulted in pioneering achievements in space exploration, medical and energy technologies and military programs. The current government is focusing on resolving immediate issues and making efforts to bring in investment to boost the economic standing of the country. However, the success of these investments depends greatly on our ability to make use of S&T to transform our lagging economic sectors into productive ones and make sustainable progress The US and Russia began their space programs when the political leadership committed their nations to the ambitious goal of landing a man on the moon. The outcome of those space missions have been integral for the development of science and technology in these countries. As a result of this mission, American scientists and engineers pioneered the launch and discovery of over 6,300 new technologies during their bid to conquer space. China is another country where great emphasis was laid on Science and Technology, and it is currently the fastest growing economy in the world, strong on the path to overtake the US. In the late 60s, for example, the Communist leader of China, Mao Zedong, called for an urgent national need to find a cure for malaria. At the time, malaria spread by mosquitoes was devastating for Chinese soldiers fighting Americans in the jungles of northern Vietnam. A Chinese pharmacologist, Tu Youyouwas, was recruited to conduct this research and eventually discovered an anti-malaria medicine, which saved millions of lives across the world. For this outstanding accomplishment, TuYouyou went on to receive the Nobel Prize for medicine, despite the fact that she did not have a medical degree or a PhD. In the 1970’s, the political leadership in Pakistan launched a Nuclear Program that mobilized thousands of scientists, engineers and technicians and led to the incredible development of nuclear capability and weapons. Today, we need a similar commitment of the Political Leadership to pioneer advances in S&T which would, in turn, boost productivity in all economic sectors, including agriculture, education, health and industrial development. The current government is focusing on resolving immediate issues and making efforts to bring in investment to boost the economic standing of the country. However, the success of these investments depends greatly on our ability to make use of S&T to transform our lagging economic sectors into productive one sand make sustainable progress. The China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) provides a great opportunity for Pakistan to engage in an alliance for the promotion of cross-border cooperation in the S&T sectors. Pakistan has chronic unemployment challenges and promoting the Manufacturing industry is the key driver of rapid economic growth and the associated creation of employment. The Government should set out a framework to boost industrialization and manufacturing units to help address this unemployment problem. Pakistan must seek Chinese help in setting up manufacturing units across the country to respond to local needs and circumstances under the CPEC program. In order for Pakistan to transform itself from Developing to Developed country, we need to identify our competitive edge and the areas in which we are significantly better than our competitors. This competitiveness could be our better trained workforce in certain areas, scientific and technological capabilities or any favorable natural resources. We need to work to bridge the demand and supply gap for the S&T workforce and continue investing in education especially Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education, using the Inquiry Based Science Education (IBSE) approach for teaching and learning. STEM education through IBSE approach would ensure a sustained supply of workforce that is equipped with 21st Centrury skills. The advancements of Science and technology sectors can play a significant role to pull Pakistan out of its unendingeconomic crisis. However, we should not expect universities and research centers to follow the research model of the United States and elsewhere. Rather, we need to adapt to technologies appropriate to our local circumstances and respond to the local challenges and obvious needs of industry, agriculture, and education of Pakistan. We expect that the new government must put special emphasis on human resource development as it is a key factor to foster industrial development with a special focus on science and technology to achieve sustainable, economic and inclusive growth. The writer is Sustainable Development Professional Published in Daily Times, November 16th 2018.