South Africa, Development Research (SA GER CDR)

UWC Centres of Excellence training workshop on the new DigiFace digital teaching and learning platform

In the first week of December 2020, the two UWC DAAD Centres of Excellence – the South African-German Centre for Development Research SA-GER CDR and the South African German Centre for Transnational Criminal Justice TRANSCRIM – took part in a training workshop on the use of the new DigiFace digital teaching and learning platform. Colleagues from Nelson Mandela University, Port Elizabeth, who are managing partners of the DigiFace project, organized and run the training workshop in a venue close to Cape Town.

DigiFace – short for “Digital Initiative for African Centres of Excellence” – is a new project funded by DAAD that aims at supporting and facilitating Higher Education learning and research at all DAAD African Centres of Excellence. The project is strengthening the Centres’ digital competencies as well as the networking among all the Centres – between all institutions involved, between staff, students, and alumni.

Core element of the DigiFace-initiative is the creation and establishment of a central interactive digital platform which is based on the Moodle learning management system. Participants in the training workshop started to develop course material and got a good understanding of both theoretical and practical knowledge required to make full use of the different tools and facilities of the platform. The workshop that way supported both Centres in offering course designs suitable for blended and hybrid learning, – both essential elements of the current and future learning environment at UWC. The two Centres, going forward, are joining forces to promote the use of the new platform in their respective institutes, and to collaborate more closely within the digital infrastructure that the new DigiFace project provides.

Members and facilitators of the training workshop: (back row right to left): Prof. John-Mark Iyi (UWC / TRANSCRIM), Lance Scheepers (UWC / SA-GER CDR), Ruth Knoblich (UWC / SA-GER CDR), Dr. Nortje Windell (UWC / TRANSCRIM), Elmien Waring (NMU Port Elizabeth), and Mike Swanepoel (NMU Port Elizabeth); (front row right to left): Shamiso Mandioma (UWC / SA-GER CDR), Karlien Potgieter (NMU Port Elizabeth), Prof. Paul Webb (NMU Port Elizabeth), and Dr. Michael Nguatem Belebema (UWC / SA-GER CDR).

DAAD’s Secretary General Dr. Dorothea Rüland, RUB’s Rector Prof. Dr. Axel Schölmerich and Chancellor Dr. Christina Reinhardt visited the South African-German Centre for Development Research

In early 2020, South Africa has welcomed and hosted the ’27th Delegation Visit for Leaders of German Higher Education Management’, organized by the International DAAD Academy. In the second week of March, 20 Presidents, Vice Chancellors and Registrars from German universities visited South African higher education and research institutions, ministries and the National Research Foundation (NRF) as well as German partner institutions such as political foundations or the German Agency for International Cooperation GIZ. During the meetings delegates received in depth insights into the South African higher education system as well as into current research focal points of the respective institutions, and were able to directly reach out for potential further cooperation partners. The delegation was accompanied by the Secretary General of the DAAD, Dr. Dorothea Rüland, and Lena von Eichborn, Head of the International DAAD Academy.

On March 12, the delegation visited the University of the Western Cape. Umesh Prawa, Head of the university’s International Relation Office, was responsible for the visit and led the programme, supported by his team and further colleagues. After a profoundly informative input by different UWC Departments, led by UWC Deputy Vice Chancellor Prof. Vivienne Lawack, hosts and guests were able to network during a fingerfood-lunch.

 

Delegates on their way to the meeting on UWC campus.
First part of the meeting, led by UWC Deputy Vice Chancellor Prof. Vivienne Lawack.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the break, Ruth Knoblich, the Centre’s new DAAD Lecturer in Development Research, presented basic facts and figures about the DAAD South African-German Centre for Development Research. Her presentation led to a lively round-table talk about the Centre’s character and activities by colleagues, alumni and current students: Prof. Julian May, Director of the NRF-DST Centre of Excellence in Food Security at UWC, Director of the Institute for Social Development and one of the four Steering Committee members of the South African-German Centre of Development Research: Dr. Razack Karriem (Acting Director of the Institute for Social Development), Prof. Mulugeta Dinbabo, Dr. Coretta Jonah, Dr. Martina Lembani, Melisa Dlamini, Langton Moyo, Tamara Kaschek and Kumbula Xego.

For the Centre, it was a particular highlight to meet RUB’s Rector Prof. Dr. Axel Schölmerich and Chancellor Dr. Christina Reinhardt who were part of the delegation, together with the Secretary General of the DAAD, Dr. Dorothea Rüland.

From left to right – back row: Dr. Razack Karriem, Melisa Dlamini, Kumbula Xego, Dr. Coretta Jonah, Tamara Kaschek, Dr. Christina Reinhardt, Prof. Julian May, Prof. Dr. Axel Schölmerich, Ruth Knoblich, Dr. Dorothea Rüland; from left to right – front row: Dr. Martina Lembani, Prof. Mulugeta Dinbabo, Langton Moyo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meeting with the heads of the Ruhr-University Bochum Chancellor Dr. Christina Reinhardt and Rector Prof. Dr. Axel Schölmerich; behind: Prof. Julian May, Director of the NRF-DST Centre of Excellence in Food Security at UWC, Director of the ISD and one of the four Steering Committee members of the SA-GER CDR and Ruth Knoblich, DAAD Lecturer in Development Research at SA-GER CDR.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A historical campus-walk formed the last part of the UWC visit. Prof. Premesh Lalu, Director of the DST-NRF Centre for Humanities Research at UWC, offered impressive insights into the university’s history and its role during apartheid’s times.

Prof. Premesh Lalu guiding the delegation through the University of the Western Cape-Robben Island Mayibuye Archives housed in the main library at the UWC; in the middle: RUB’s Rector Prof. Dr. Axel Schölmerich next to Dr. Lisette Andreae, Counsellor, Head of Education, Science, Research and Technology, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Pretoria.
Delegation in the UWC- Robben Island Mayibuye Archives; left: Umesh Prawa, Head of IRO at UWC, in front: RUB’s Rector Prof. Dr. Axel Schölmerich.
Delegation in front of the Malangatana mural inside of the UWC library, in the middle: Prof. Premesh Lalu; at the very right: Prof. John-Mark Iyi, Faculty of Law / DAAD South African German Centre for Transnational Criminal Justice TRANSCRIM.
Group picture on UWC campus; last row right: Jaco Herbst and Dr. Anja Hallacker from the DAAD Information Centre Johannesburg; last row left: Lena von Eichborn, Head of the International DAAD Academy.

The delegates later emphasized how much they enjoyed their time at UWC after participating in such multifaceted programme. They particularly underlined how impressed they were by the university’s spirit and engagement, and that they were able to set up valuable new contacts for further cooperation. For the Centre, it was a very special moment of making its networks visible: its network between former and current students, between colleagues from all institutions involved, between the leading level of UWC, RUB, and the DAAD as the Centre’s funding organization.

 

Digitalization-Kick-off: New Digital Infrastructure for the Network of the DAAD Centres of Excellence

On March 3-6, 2020 the Kick-off Meeting of the new digitalization project DigiFace took place at Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth. DigiFace – short for “Digital Initiative for African Centres of Excellence” – is a new project funded by DAAD that aims at supporting and facilitating higher education learning and research at all DAAD African Centres of Excellence. DigiFace is setting-up tools and facilities for digital learning and knowledge exchange with the help of a central interactive digital platform. The project is going to strengthen the Centres’ digital learning, teaching and research competencies as well as the networking among all the Centres – between all institutions involved, between staff, students, and alumni.

The Kick-off meeting was the official starting-point of the new project. Delegates from all the currently 10 Centres as well as from the Centres’ Alumni Network gathered in order to exchange on the current statuses of digital infrastructure, the needs and expectations with regard to such an all comprising new digital network, the opportunities and challenges for its implementation as well as on the next steps to go.

 

The SA-GER CDR was represented by Lance Scheepers (Information Systems ISD), Enayat Hamza (Programme Manager: Training and Consultancy at the SoG), and Ruth Knoblich (DAAD Lecturer in Development Research at the SA-GER CDR).

 

 

 

 

 

Interview with Dr. Darlington Sibanda // 2nd DAAD Alumni Conference

“There is more room to expand into equipping young black Africans to beneficiate their own resources.”

Dr. Darlington Sibanda is a Development Researcher from Zimbabwe and an Alumnus of the University of the Western Cape (USW), South Africa. The interview took place during the 2nd DAAD Centers for African Excellence Alumni Conference in Akosombo, Ghana, where Darlington held a presentation which was titled: Towards inclusive Urban Land Governance in South Africa.

He currently works as a researcher and educator. His PhD research focused on Urban Land Tenure and Tenancy in South Africa. Other research interests are: Land Governance, Urbanization, Social Policy, Poverty and Inequality, Water and Sanitation Services, Social Protests.

Interview

 May you introduce yourself?

Dr. Sibanda: My name is Darlington Sibanda. I’m a PhD graduate. I graduated from the University of the Western Cape in 2018. I’m originally from Zimbabwe and I did my PhD in Poverty, Land and Agrarian Studies. I am a beneficial of DAAD during my Master’s program.

How did you get in touch with the DAAD?

Dr. Sibanda: When I was doing my Honor’s Degree at the University of the Western Cape I was one of the top students actually. One of the lecturers approached me to say: Look, there is this scholarship which is based on merit. You did very well, so don’t you want to apply? Then I applied and I got it eventually.

What influence did the scholarship have on your career?

Dr. Sibanda: Huge influence. Studying currently is becoming very difficult in Africa and elsewhere. It’s very expensive, so to have an opportunity to start with the DAAD scholarship meant that I could focus on my studies, living more comfortably and do my best for my education.

And what do you think can be improved by the DAAD?

Dr. Sibanda: Well, I feel that there is this need to reach more students. Only a small number of students benefitted. It will be far much better if we can have more talented African students who can benefit from that and go back to make an impact in their own countries.

The network is called African Excellence and on this Conference we are talking about Africa in general. Africa has 54 countries, but in Europe many people still consider Africa as one nation. So what can we do to eliminate this prejudice?

Dr. Sibanda: First of all, I would want to say that the idea of the Eurocentric borders came with Colonialism and everything else that is connected to it. The way the borders were designed did not take into consideration that within one particular African country there might be different cultures, different languages, different tribes. So you find that within one country itself there is a diverse number of tribes who don’t necessarily agree on everything. That’s number one. Then number two: Africa, being 54 countries, is quite diverse. You find that Northern part of Africa, which is ideally Arab speaking and the religion as well is related to that. As we come down to Central Africa you will also find it’s quite diverse, we have Francophone Africans, Anglophone Africans, Arab speaking Africans and so on. So it’s huge and diverse. The whole perception of one unified Africa does not exist.

What kind of contribution to Development issues is delivered by the DAAD programs?

Dr. Sibanda: The DAAD programs current focus, particularly the one that I benefitted from, is looking at Development Studies and how to work around the issue of policy and governance and to improve the governance in our countries. I feel there is more room to expand into equipping young black Africans to beneficiate their own resources. If DAAD can go the direction of identifying young black Africans who can go into studies which can focus on beneficiation of natural resources, that would be huge and wonderful.

Thank you very much, Mr. Sibanda.

 

 

 

The Interview was held by Lani Marie Doehring, a Student Assistant at GGCDS (Ghanaian-German Center for Development Studies) at the Center for Development Research Bonn, Germany.

 

The Continuous Visit of President Omar al-Bashir of the Sudan to Uganda without Being Arrested Leaves the ICC in Dilemma

The president of the Sudan, Omar al-Bashir has consecutively visited Uganda in both May 2016 and November 2017 and returned to his country without being arrested. president Omar al-Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed in the Darfur region.

Uganda as a member state to the Rome statute is obligated to arrest president Omar al-Bashir on sight in Uganda but has always defied the ICC.

From these developments we may realize that;
1. the ICC’s dependency on individual state cooperation leaves it ineffective
2. the absence of international law enforcing institutions in individual states cripples its would be strength especially in arresting fugitives.
3. Africa seems to have become hostile to the ICC’s operations and the hostility is likely to keep growing.
4. The ICC needs to re-strategize on enforcement measures of the Rome Statute.
5. Probably, indicting those who fail to arrest fugitives present in their states to the ICC will force them to choose between inviting fugitives to their countries or effect the arrest so that they are not arrested.
6. The rate of non-cooperation from member states is a serious set-back for international and transnational criminal justice

Call for applications – International Alumni Conference

The South African-German Centre for Development Research (SA-GER CDR) at UWC/Cape Town (South Africa) together with the Institute of Development Research and Development Policy (IEE) of Ruhr-University Bochum (Germany) is happy to host the international conference

“Tackling the root causes of displacement in Sub Sahara Africa”
taking place 26 November – 01 December 2017 in Cape Town/South Africa

Alumni of diverse study programmes at the South African-German Centre for Development Research at UWC/Cape Town, the Ghanaian-German Centre for Development Studies at the University of Ghana, the Tanzanian-German Centre for Eastern African Legal Studies at the University of Dar es Salaam, the Namibian-German Centre for Logistics at Namibia University of Science and Technology/Windhoek, the South African-German Centre for Transnational Criminal Justice at UWC/Cape Town, the Congolese-German Centre for Microfinance at the Congo Protestant University/Kinshasa, the East and South African-German Centre for Educational Research at the Moi-University/Eldoret (Kenya) and the Kenyan Centre for Mining, Environmental Engineering and Resource Management at Taita Taveta University College/Voi are invited to participate at the conference, contributing actively by sharing their experiences and knowledge concerning the abovementioned points of interest.

On four days, approximately 50 conference participants – practitioners, researchers and students – will discuss different aspects of the topic, introduced by invited speakers of relevant organizations (UNHCR, IOM) who will present the current status and consequences of displacement in Sub-Sahara Africa and reflect on the role of (regular and irregular) migration in relation to displacement. The African Excellence Centres will introduce their areas of expertise and their link to the conference topic and will integrate their recent research activities and the professional experience of participating Alumni.

The conference is financed by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) with funds of the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

For more information please have a look at the detailed Call.
For inquiries, please refer to Britta Niklas (alumni_african-excellence@drd-sa.org).

New Publications at the South African-German Centre for Development Research

davison-muchadenyika

Davison Muchadenyika, PhD candidate at the SA-GER CDR published a new paper titled ‘Multi-Donor Trust Funds and Fragile States: Assessing the Aid Effectiveness of the Zimbabwe Multi-Donor Trust Fund’.

Research for this paper was largely conducted during Davison worked on his Master thesis for the Bochum Programme of Development Management.

Davison is one of the most active PhD students regarding puplications and already published 3 papers in 2015:

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Land for Housing: A Political Resource – Reflections from Zimbabwe’s urban areas. Journal of Southern African Studies, 41 (6): 1219-1238.

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Women Struggles and Large-scale Diamond Mining in Marange, Zimbabwe. The Extractive Industries and Society, 2 (2015): 714-721.

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Slum Upgrading and Inclusive Municipal Governance in Harare, Zimbabwe: New Perspectives for the Urban Poor. Habitat International, 48 (2015): 1-10.

 

New Scholarship holders selected for the intake 2017!

Protests at South African Universities

For the intake 2017 the selection committee of the SA-GER CDR selected 4 Master and 2 Phd Students out of 230 Master and 196 PhD applications to commence their studies at the South African-German Centre for Development Research in January 2017.

We hope that they will be able to start their studies in january 2017 in time, as current scholarship holders are severly affected by the student protests against the rais of student fees at South African Universities (8% increase was announced by the government) and the closure of the University of the Western Cape (UWC). UWC, like many other universities in South Africa, closed  in order to avoid violent riots.

 

Photo by Ashraf Hendricks
Photo by Ashraf Hendricks

On the other hand a lot of students and as well parents demonstrate for the (re)opening of universities.
We hope that universities will open again soon and that the „fee problem“ will be solved in due time.

Alumni SA-GER CDR: My Experience as a MILEAD 2015 Fellow

Chifundo Patience Chilera, MADM graduate and South African-German Centre for Development Research (SA-GER CDR) scholarship holder from Malawi from the 2012-2014 intake, has been selected as a fellow of one of Africa’s most influential young women leadership initiatives. She shares her experience of being a fellow of such a distinguished group.

In May 2015, the Moremi Initiative for Women Leadership In Africa named me as one of 26 Most Outstanding Emerging Young Women Leaders in Africa and by virtue, I was awarded the 2015 Moremi Initiative for Leadership Empowerment And Development (MILEAD) Fellowship to attend the Leadership Institute hosted at the University of Ghana.

Leadership Institute event

The Leadership Institute was an event that lasted three weeks. Every day, we were visited by distinguished speakers. We got to hear and learn from accomplished entrepreneurs, ranging from software developers to management consultants to social entrepreneurs; and from distinguished professors, leaders in the third sector, the corporate sector, and government officials. We also met with some of Ghana’s finest young professionals and even the boxing legend, Azumah Nelson, who is considered Africa’s greatest boxers of all time, came to spend some time with us. We had a crash course on what seemed to be everything: feminist theories, African history, photography, writing, organisational development, politics, personal motivation, public speaking, business management, civic leadership, environment, public health, fundraising, even Pilates. There were field visits to the World Bank Office and the Africa Women Development Fund headquarters in Ghana. There were also excursions to the historical Cape Coast and we got to tour the Kakum National Park, which is covered in the tropical rainforest and has a canopy walkway that is 350 meters long- I dare you to try this.

The Community of Fellows

Despite the many accomplished speakers and mentors we had, the true richness of being a MILEAD Fellow lies in being part of the community of Fellows. I have learned so much more from the 25 other Fellows I spent the time with in Ghana and continue to benefit from belonging to the wider community of about 200 Fellows from 7 cohorts, representing 44 countries.
MILEAD Experience Gruppenfotos
MILEAD class of 2015 (photo: private).

My peers in the class of 2015 were truly outstanding. Some were founders of initiatives that are making strides in leading community development and promoting the lives of women and girls. For example, one of the Fellows is an award winning young woman, who was born HIV positive and now runs an organisation called The Innocent League Uganda, raising awareness about the disease and provides counselling to young people. Another is a 13-time award-winning philanthropist who runs her own charity that sponsors the education of about 500 children from disadvantaged backgrounds in Zambia. Another is a local government councillor who also runs a non-profit organization supporting women and girls in her ward in Ghana. There was another woman from Malawi, who now runs a centre that provides physiotherapy and social support to women with children that suffer from cerebral palsy. Others were outstanding scholars from leading universities across the world, pursuing undergraduate, graduate, and even doctorate studies in fields such as architecture, actuarial sciences, law, and medicine, and young professionals in the corporate sector, government and non-profit sectors.
Each one of us was at a different phase of our personal progress. While some Fellows were just starting out, some had already established their organisations from as young as 16 years of age and had made strides in their careers. And while some of us were focused on policy at the international or national levels, the work of some Fellows was community-based. We came from all over Africa and the diaspora. There were not enough dinner time conversations to allow us to tap into the depths of the wealth of experiences and passion and ambition that made the Class of 2015. I was literally overwhelmed every day, basking in such greatness.

Representing group at UN Dialogue

During my time in Ghana, I also had the opportunity to represent my year group of the UN Women Africa Rising Gender Equality Dialogue on Ending Child Marriage through Young Women’s Leadership & Activism. It was a privilege to be among the contributors to the dialogue, including Nyaradzyi Gumbonzvanda (African Union Goodwill Ambassador for Campaign to End Child Marriage), Nana Oye Lithur (Minister of Women, Children & Social Protection of Ghana), Diana Ofwona (UN Women West and Central Africa Regional Director), and Mawuli Dake (African Human Rights Advocate and also the co-founder of the Moremi Initiative).

Not like any other leadership programme

Taken at face-value, the MILEAD Fellowship programme may appear to be just like any other leadership programme for African Women. It is not.

The MILEAD Fellowship is more than the three weeks spent at the Leadership Institute. In the year following the award, Fellows design and are expected to deliver a community change project, branded as MiChange Projects. Some projects have been about introducing innovative ways to deliver the Fellow’s already existing projects. Other projects have been new establishments in response to the needs in the Fellow’s community. There have been over one hundred new MiChange projects that have been initiated, most of which have evolved and are still ongoing projects. In 2013, two Michange projects were listed for the World Youth Summit Awards, and one of which won the award. My MiChange project is called MiStory. My goal is to document and profile the stories and projects of MILEAD Fellows through a series of blogs and social media, with the ain of creating a peer-to-peer sharing hub for knowledge and experience of young people leading change. Ultimately, I hope to compile a coffee table book that will showcase the cadre of youthful women leadership that Africa has – a selection of whom have been mobilised and mentored through the MILEAD Fellowship.

On-going commitment and new opportunities

The MILEAD Fellowship is not a one-off moment that passes with time. There is seemingly no end to being a MILEAD Fellow, with a constant stream of open opportunities. Recently, through the Moremi Initiative, I was invited to speak at the United Nations 60th Session of the Commission for the Status of Women (CSW) as one of the MILEAD Fellows, at the UN Headquarters in New York. CSW, a functional commission of the Economic and Social Council, is the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. I spoke at the session: “Enhancing Young Women’s Voices for Women’s Empowerment and Sustainable Development: A Multi-generational Dialogue with Emerging African Women Leaders”, which was co-hosted by the Government of Ghana, and the Moremi Initiative to an audience of over 300 people. I, like the other Fellows on the panel, engaged the audience in a discussion about strategies for promoting women’s right and equality, led by young women based on our experiences. We were also exclusively invited to be part of the Africa Women Development Fund Gala, where we met and were mentored by a group of African Women that have financed women-led initiatives in Africa by providing over 20 million USD in grants over the last 10 years.
Being a MILEAD Fellow opens many doors. There are Fellows who have been part of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Community, and some make it to spaces such as UN Advisory Groups.
There is not a single thing that sums up the making of a leader; but for me, the MILEAD Fellowship has been one of the most impactful opportunities ever granted me, a gift that keeps on giving. I belong to a community of young women who understand that the power to lead is the commitment to serve. And serve we do.

by Chifundo Patience Chilera

South African-German Centre for Development Research (SA-GER CDR) – UWC/Cape Town

6 new scholarship holders commenced their studies in January 2016
In august 2015 the selection committee of the SA-GER CDR selected 4 Master and 2 PhD students out of 478 applicants for a Centre scholarship of 2 (MA) respectively 3 (PhD) years. In January 2016 the 6 new scholarship holders commenced their studies at the School of Government and the Institute for Social Development (ISD).
Evans Sakyi Boadu from Ghana was selected for the Master in Public Administration, whereas Metron Ziga from Zimbabwe, Phoene Oware from Kenya and Dorcas Okyere from Ghana started studying the Master in Development Studies.Jeremy Waiswa (Uganda) and Samuel Kapingidza (Zimbabwe) both started their research projects at ISD in order to obtain the PhD in International Development Studies.
New Call for scholarship applications at the SA-GER CDR open until 15th July 2016
All Master and PhD applicants for the intake 2017 have to fill in an online application form which is available on the website www.drd-sa.org in the respective “How to apply” sections of each programme.
New Publications of SA-GER CDR Members – PhD Student Davison Muchadenyika recently published 3 papers, which are partly online available, Prof. John J. Williams and Dr. Kennedy Alatinga published a paper as well:

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Land for Housing: A Political Resource – Reflections from Zimbabwe’s urban areas. Journal of Southern African Studies, 41 (6): 1219-1238.

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Women Struggles and Large-scale Diamond Mining in Marange, Zimbabwe. The Extractive Industries and Society, 2 (2015): 714-721.

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Slum Upgrading and Inclusive Municipal Governance in Harare, Zimbabwe: New Perspectives for the Urban Poor. Habitat International, 48 (2015): 1-10.
Alatinga, Kennedy; Williams, John J. (2015): Towards Universal Health Coverage: Exploring the Determinants of Household Enrolment into National Health Insurance in the Kassena Nankana District, Ghana. GIDS, Vol. 12, No. 1&2, 2015: 88-105

 

Foto from left: Samuel Kapingidza, Dorcas Okyere, Jeremy Waiswa, Metron Ziga, Phoene Oware and Evans Sakyi Boadu.