SASSCAL Executive Dr Jane Olwoch and GERICS director Prof Daniela Jacob signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) at the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) on Wednesday, 20 March 2019. SASSCAL’s objectives are research management, provision of services and capacity building. The MoA falls within these SASSCAL pillars as it establishes a formal link between both institutions to provide a framework for the performance of joint programs, projects and other joint activities in the field of climate science, climate service provision, knowledge transfer and capacity building.
The established agreement includes, among others, efforts to train mainly young scientists and to develop climate service products in order to support the countries of southern Africa in their efforts to adapt to climate change. SASSCAL, through its Human Capacity Development is in the process of establishing its Alumni Programme. The Programme is expected to nurture and provide further support to former SASSCAL scholarships holders and graduates. The Agreement will thus augment SASSCAL’s pursuits of strengthening the regional human and institutional capacity development.
The Agreement has been signed at a crucial time before the launch of the SASSCAL 2.0.research call. The signed cooperation will strongly support SASSCAL 2.0 initiatives.
Furthermore, the Agreement will provide a platform for the exchange and joint use of equipment that should see SASSCAL researchers exposed to international ground breaking technologies. The exchange of data, tools and information relevant to research priorities of both institutions will further strengthen the regional capacity to participate in international climate change conversations. This MoU follows a recently signed MoU between SASSCAL and EIF of Namibia; a clear indication that SASSCAL is strategically positioning herself to strengthen cooperation at both regional and international levels which is a necessary step in science diplomacy.