The key objective of the Academy is to promote and apply scientific thinking in the service of society. To this end, the Academy shall:
- Use the common ground of scientific knowledge and activity to remove barriers between people and obstacles to full development of their intellectual capacity;
- Endeavour in every possible way to inspire, promote and recognise excellence in scientific and technical practice;
- Investigate and publicly report on various matters, in its own discretion or at the request of government or organisations in civil society, in order to promote and apply scientific thinking in the service of society;
- Promote science education and a culture of science in the population at large;
- Maintain strict independence while consulting other organisations and individuals in the widest manner possible;
- Endeavour to establish and develop close relations with scientific organisations in South Africa and with similar academies in other countries; and
- Take any other action that it may consider necessary towards the attainment of its key objective.