The University of Basel has developed close ties with Southern Africa over several centuries. Since the founding of the Basler Mission (today mission21) in 1815, Basel has been building competence in research and development on South Africa. Vital for the establishment of scientific relations has been the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, whose research on malaria prevention in Tanzania has recently been awarded the Prince of Asturias Price.
The reputed Basel University Centre for African Studies and the exhaustive collection Basel Africa Bibliographies (Namibia Resource Centre and Southern Africa Library) are regularly contacted by international Africa researchers. The recent inauguration of the Centre of Competence on Africa and the nomination of the University of Basel as Leading House for a bilateral collaboration programme with South Africa (SSAJRP) have further consolidated the University’s expert position in the field of African studies.
SSAJRP’s first call (period 2008-2011)
With the signing of the bilateral agreement [PDF/48 KB] for collaboration in Science and Technology between Switzerland and the Republic of South Africa on the 7th of December 2007 in Basel, the importance of this partnership has been underlined. The agreement emphasizes the need for strong and reliable partners to secure scientific excellence in highly competitive research areas – in Switzerland as well as internationally.
In response to the calls for proposals that were made in June and December 2007 under the Swiss South African Joint Research Programme (SSAJRP), the University of Basel and CSIR (Programme Leading Houses in Switzerland and South Africa) received 39 eligible joint research project proposals.
The proposals were subsequently reviewed in both Switzerland and South Africa and the recommendations of the reviewers were considered by the Joint Committee that oversees the Joint Research Programme. The key consideration that resulted in the selection of theses projects was scientific excellence. Further considerations included the potential for innovation and generation of market-oriented outputs, as well as the likelihood for creating long-term collaboration.
Given the budget that was made available by both sides, 8 projects were selected for financial support in a first round, 8 additional projects in a second round. The grants approved for these projects cover the period from January 1st, 2008, to December 31st, 2011.
View a list of the projects.
Apart from joint research projects the funding instruments of SSAJRP include faculty and student exchanges. Exchange grants can currently be applied for.