UK and South Africa launch bilateral research initiative

Wednesday 04 May 2016

 

Programme will support higher education research into security, science, technology and political theory.

The Honourable Minister of Science and TechnologyNaledi Pandor has launched a Bilateral Research Initiative between the United Kingdom and South Africa as part of the Newton Fund. The British Council’s Newton Fund programme is contributing £ 300 000 per chair over three years which is match funded by the National Research Foundation of South Africa (NRF).

The Newton Fund SA-UK Bilateral Chairs programme will strengthen research and innovation in South Africa and the UK and promote international exchange and cooperation.

“Attaching the Newton Fund brand to one of South Africa’s premier government programmes has not only helped to promote the Fund, but has also boosted the overall profile of the UK-SA bilateral relationship by illustrating our shared commitment to co-investment and research excellence,” said Laura Harris, Newton Fund Officer, British High Commission.

The announcement was made at Cape Town International Convention Centre as part of Going Global 2016, the British Council’s annual international conference for leaders of education to debate international higher and further education issues and challenges, and to discuss collaborative solutions.

The initiative supports the National Development Plan to develop the knowledge economy in South Africa promoting research excellence through collaboration on shared priorities. The participating South African and UK Higher Education Institutions aim to increase the quality and quantity of Masters and PhD graduates. Colm McGivern, British Council South Africa Country Director, will introduce the research chairs co-hosted at the University of the Western Cape (Food Security), Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (Food Security and the Oceans Economy) and Wits University and the University of Cambridge (Political Theory). 

“We’re delighted to be connecting world class researchers from South Africa and the UK through this programme – international research collaboration is central to economic growth and development, and works over the long term to build the relationships and create the knowledge that will power the future for both countries,” said McGivern.

The Bilateral Chair Initiative is implemented by the British Council and the National Research Foundation of South Africa and provides additional support for the South African Research Chairs (SARChi) initiative, a Department of Science and Technology (DST) and National Research Foundation (NRF) programme building research capacity at Higher Education Institutions.

 

About the British Council

 

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities.A UK charity governed by Royal Charter, each year we reach over 20 million people face-to-face through our events; and more than 500 million online and via broadcasts and publications, providing meaningful international opportunities for people and making a positive contribution and lasting difference to the UK’s prosperity, influence and stability.

Our work makes a lasting difference to the UK’s international standing by increasing the country’s influence and networks with key decision makers, influencers and the wider public globally. It increases UK prosperity by encouraging more trade, investment and tourism.  It helps to keep the UK safe and secure by reducing extremism and improving stability and security in strategically important countries. It also increases influence by growing the number of people who know and trust the UK.

 

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