The Mahathir Science Award Foundation (MSAF) was established on 11 June 2010.
To champion tropical sciences, according benefits to countries in the tropics and the world at large through the award, international exchange programmes and knowledge sharing.
To bestow the award on scientists, institutions or organisations worldwide in recognition of contributions and innovations towards solving problems of the tropics through science and technology; to confer the award to researchers who have made internationally recognised breakthroughs in pioneering tropical research and who have contributed cutting edge tropical research that have brought impact on the well-being of society in the fields of Tropical Agriculture, Tropical Architecture and Engineering, Tropical Medicine and Tropical Natural Resources.
To uplift the stature of the science award to be a prominent international science awards, and to oversee the selection process for such a science award.
To encourage excellence in tropical science research that will accord direct benefits to countries in the tropics and the global community; to contribute towards scientific tropical research that will benefit mankind, promote international exchange programmes, sharing of knowledge, and other business development through scientific activities in connection with the foregoing objectives.