Cape Town - The University of Cape Town (UCT) has joined forces with the University of Bristol to launch a new and exciting ‘Researchers without Borders’ PhD programme.
UCT Vice-Chancellor, Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng was welcomed by Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Bristol, Professor Hugh Brady to Bristol, where the signing took place on Tuesday.
UCT spokesperson Elijah Moholola said the Researchers without Borders PhD Programme is a framework that will build research capacity within and across the two universities, providing new opportunities for students to work on exciting research projects that exploit the strengths and capabilities of both partners.
"The participating PhD students will be registered at and have supervisors and co-supervisors at both universities and will spend approximately equal amounts of time at each location," Moholola said.
He said the environment and supervision provided by both universities will underpin the development of a cohort of richly supported, globally agile researchers who will go on to make a leading impact in their future roles.
Phakeng said: "This novel programme, with its focus on early career researchers, has great potential to support future leaders and shapers in research and society, whilst bringing two great universities together in a profound collaboration".
Welcoming the start of the programme, Brady said he is delighted to mark the signing of the agreement with their colleagues at the UCT.
"It is a watershed moment in our relationship and partnership work in Africa and will support world-class research in new exciting co-evolved projects," Brandy said.
The Director of the Bristol Doctoral College, Associate Professor Terry McMaster, who initiated and led the development of the programme, said Researchers without Borders signifies their two graduate student communities working in harmony, to support, train and develop the next generation of researchers, "they will be uniquely equipped to be globally mobile and will be enabled to make significant contributions in their research and personal leadership".
Moholola said the initial support for the programme has come from the two universities, the Global Challenge Research Fund and the alumni community of the University of Bristol.
He said the first cohort of seven students will start projects in 2019 across the diverse research areas of Migration and Mobility, Public Health, Exercise, and Epidemiology.
The partneship comes after Phakeng was honoured through a Doctor of Science degree at a ceremony from the University of Bristol on Monday.