Stellenbosch University extends continental reach to Algeria

Stellenbosch University (SU) has further expanded its reach on the African continent partnering with the University of Science and Technology Houari Boumediene (USTHB) in Algeria. The USTHB is now one of 19 universities on the continent with whom SU has an institutional agreement. It is the first formal partnership between SU and an Algerian institution.

 A delegation from USTHB consisting of Prof Fawzia Mekideche, Vice Rector of External Relations and Prof Djillali Benouar, Director of Research at the Built Environment Research Laboratory visited SU from 17-21 July, the trip including a formal signing of the agreement between the two institutions on 18 July. They met with members of SU’s senior leadership, and staff from Stellenbosch University International (SU International). They also held discussions with representatives from a wide range of departments across the university, as well as the Research Alliance for Disaster and Risk Reduction (RADAR). 

 Meeting with Prof Wim de Villiers, Rector and Vice-Chancellor; Prof Mekideche said USTHB is pleased to partner with an “illustrious and prestigious university”. She expressed hope that “scientific collaborations of common interest between the two institutions will be productive”.

 Ms Huba Boshoff, Manager: Centre for Partnerships and Internationalisation at SU International, said the agreement establishes a framework for collaboration as well as a protocol for the mobility of students and staff. “This partnership provides a gateway for collaboration between Stellenbosch and universities in North Africa.” 

 The new partnership agreement extends the cooperation USTHB has built through the Periperi U initiative at SU, in which RADAR serves as secretariat. Periperi U represents an active collaboration of African higher education institutions established in 2006 to develop sustainable capacities in disaster risk-related scholarship across the continent. It also advances opportunities enabled through a governmental agreement for science and technology, signed in 2000 between the Governments of Algeria and South Africa.

Signing a memorandum of understanding are front, from left: Prof Wim de Villiers and Prof Fawzia Mekideche. At the back from left, are: Prof Djillali Benouar;  Dr Ailsa Holloway, Director of the Research Alliance for Disaster Risk Reduction (RADAR) ; Ms Huba Boshoff and Prof Eugene Cloete, Vice-Rector for Research, Innovation and Postgraduate Studies at SU