New opportunities for match-making with South African Universities

As a researcher at BSS you can now apply for seed-money in portions of maximum DKK 30,000 towards initiating new research collaborations with the South African universities, University of Cape Town and Witwatersrand Universitet, Johannesburg.

The senior management team at AU have decided to place special emphasis on establishing collaborations with African universities.
In connection with this, vice-deans Jan Ifversen from the Faculty of Arts and J. Michael Hasekam from Health have visited two of the most prominent universities in South Africa, the University of Cape Town (UCT) and Witwatersrand University (Wits) in Johannesburg, to see if they were interested in collaborating with AU.

“South Africa has had a hard time establishing international relations as a result of so many years of apartheid; but now, after twenty years with a democratic government and stable growth, things are starting to look up. And at both UTC and Wits, they are very interested in cooperating with AU, because it gives them a chance to draw on and benefit from our strengths within research and education, which will ease their access to international research funding,” explains Jan Ifversen and J. Michael Hasenkam.

The researchers proceed to explain that UCT and Wits have established clear research strengths and possess extensive and unique research material related to nature, animal life, culture, health and much more, which Danish researchers and students will be able to benefit from. 

Seed money towards matchmaking

In 2014, AU will therefore be channelling seed money in portions of maximum DKK 30,000 towards initiating specific collaborations between researchers from AU and UCT and Wits.  

“In order to apply for seed money, you must make a suggestion of an equal and balanced collaboration, which is focused on both research and education. This means that a researcher or lecturer from AU must identify a research project that can only – or with significant advantage – be carried out in collaboration with a South African partner,” say the two vice-deans. Following their visit to the two universities, they have outlined the relevant opportunities for collaboration.

“The initiative supports matchmaking and the establishment of valuable research collaborations. And it is a requirement that both the AU partner and partners from the two South African universities benefit from the collaboration to an extent that exceeds what can be achieved through an independent project in each country,” they conclude.


  • For several years, AU has been part of a formal collaboration between Nordic universities and universities in the southern part of Africa (SANORD), and they are now strengthening this involvement.
  • Applications for seed money can be submitted until 1 December 2014.
  • Read more about the University of Cape Town
  • Read more about Witwatersrand University
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