News Archive

September 2011

For the past five years, winds of change have been blowing through Ugandan science. Funded largely by a US$30-million loan from the World Bank under its Millennium Science Initiative (MSI), a large number of projects have taken place aimed at boosting the country's capacity to use science and technology in agriculture and industry to meet its development needs.

August 2011

For South African organic chemistry student Adushan Pillay, conducting research for his PhD is like building with Lego children's blocks. "That's what we do at a molecular level," he said. "You can't predict what will work - you build and build, and it's trial and error to figure out what works." Article here.

July 2011

When Justin Omolo was growing up in Tanzania, he preferred Western medical clinics to African traditional healers. "I was the only one in my family who didn't believe in all the traditional cures," he said. "I guess I wanted proof."

Now this young African organic chemist is looking for that proof as he conducts research for his PhD on plants used by Tanzanian traditional healers to treat HIV.

June 2011

The Science Initiative Group (SIG), headed by its Executive Director Ms. Arlen Hastings, and its Program Associate, Ms. Lori Mulcare, visited and met with the University of Botswana (UB) management, staff, and students on June 24, 2011. The purpose of the visit by the RISE delegation was to meet representatives of government ministries of science, higher education and finance (or equivalents), as well as regional organizations. The objectives were to provide information about the work RISE is doing, including its potential to contribute to local economies, to explain SIG's efforts to scale up and sustain RISE through the involvement of the World Bank and other partners; and to discuss mechanisms to support regional initiatives.

June 2011

In economic terms, Uganda is one of the success stories in sub-Saharan Africa. Its GDP has grown at an average rate of more than 7% between 2000 and 2010 and it weathered the recent economic crisis better than many of its neighbours. Likewise, the country's science sector has grown.

Under long-time president Yoweri Museveni, the country has been boosting its spending on R&D, from $73 million in 2005–06 to $155 million in 2008–09, which is close to 1% of the country's GDP.