[Windhoek, December 8, 2023] – A significant step towards advancing agricultural research and innovation in Africa was taken today as the University of Namibia (UNAM) and the International University of Management (IUM), both members of RUFORUM (Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture), signed a tripartite memorandum of agreement to co-organize the second RUFORUM Triennial Conference. The event is scheduled to be held in Windhoek, Namibia, from August 12 to 16, 2024.
The signing ceremony, held at UNAM, was a momentous occasion attended by esteemed representatives from both universities. Professor Ellen Ndeshi Namhila, represented the Vice Chancellor of UNAM, while Professor Charles Makanyeza, Pro Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Research, and Innovation, represented the Vice Chancellor of IUM. Principals and Deans of both universities, the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) coordinator, and RUFORUM staff were also present to witness the signing.
The conference, a collaborative effort between the Government of Namibia (through the RUFORUM member universities, UNAM and IUM) and the RUFORUM Secretariat, aims to create a platform for knowledge exchange, research dissemination, and networking among academia, researchers, policymakers, and stakeholders in the agricultural sector across the African continent. With a focus on innovative approaches to address challenges, the event will feature keynote speakers, plenary sessions, workshops, and presentations highlighting cutting-edge research and best practices in the field of agriculture and related sciences, with a particular focus on transformative education.
The theme for the second RUFORUM Triennial Conference is “Leveraging Africa’s Higher Agricultural Education to Create Productive and Resilient Economies for its Citizens” reflecting the commitment of RUFORUM to foster sustainable agricultural practices that drive socio-economic growth and development across the continent. This year’s Conference, having in its sidelines the 20th RUFORUM Annual General Meeting is convened with the following objectives:
- Enable education and agricultural ecosystem actors to showcase and present their key findings, lesson share and inform each other on key actions required to make science work in Africa’s development. This objective will be implemented through a scientific programme that will bring together diverse stakeholders involved in Africa’s research development, policy and development.
- Engage lead actors in policy and practice, to identify action areas for further investments in agriculture and higher education. Policy dialogues will be held involving governments, higher education leaders, development partners, research and innovation as well as private sector agencies.
- Promote international linkages and partnerships for excellence in Higher Education. This objective will support the strengthening of strategic partnerships, collaboration and mutual learning to spur investments, innovation and transformation of the higher education sector systems in Africa.
- Provide a platform for discussions, and lesson learning among diverse actors on the subject of creating employment for Africa’s young population. Discussions on topical issues such as the future of work, business development and incubation, gender and inclusion, one-health initiative, and linkages among others will be held.
- Deliberate on the macro and micro needs to adapt smart operations in terms of changing connectivity, education, business practices, sustainable agricultural and value chain transitions and advancement.
The event promises to be a pivotal moment in the advancement of agricultural research and development in Africa, fostering collaboration, innovation, and knowledge-sharing to propel the continent towards a more sustainable and prosperous future.
For further information and media inquiries, please contact:
Dr. Sokona Dagnoko