New university-wide cooperation agreements in South Africa

University of Cape Town (UCT) and Witwatersrand University (Wits) i Johannesburg have just entered into cooperation agreements with AU. The agreement will include earmarked funds for AU researchers

2015.03.12 | Gitte Bindzus Foldager

Aarhus University has just entered into cooperation agreements with two of South Africa’s leading universities, the University of Cape Town (UCT) and Witwatersrand University (Wits) in Johannesburg. For some time, researchers in a variety of fields at Aarhus University have been focussing on the opportunities to strengthen cooperation with South Africa, which is one of the African countries which invests most heavily in research and education. This has resulted in close relations to these two universities in particular. These university-wide agreements establish the framework for a stronger cooperation within research, education and talent development.

Vice-dean Jan Ifversen, Faculty of Arts, and Professor Michael Hasenkam, Faculty of Health, have worked together to reach this agreement and see great potential in this cooperation.

”UCT and Wits have very strong research environments which match corresponding research environments at Aarhus University. This will therefore be a mutually beneficial cooperation and we have found that the South African universities are particularly interested in cooperating with Danish universities. This creates some obvious opportunities that we must make the most of”, Ifversen says.

Earmarked funds for AU researchers
Aarhus University as well as the two South African universities have emphasised that the agreements must lead to specific collaborative projects. Therefore, the senior management team at Aarhus University have earmarked just under DKK 370,000 to a South Africa seed fund in 2015. This will give researchers the opportunity to visit each other and explore the opportunities for project collaboration. It is possible to apply for up to DKK 60,000 per project. The first applications have been approved and collaborative projects in such fields as cultural heritage, bioscience and biomedicine are off to a good start.

Read more about the South Africa seed fund here 

Read more about the University of Cape Town here:

Read more about Witwatersrand University here: