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UWC receives a DST-NRF-UWC Flagship 

From left to right: Professor Frans Swanepoel, Professor Tyrone Pretorius, Dr Thandi Mgwebi, Minister Naledi Pandor, Professor Premesh Lalu, Dr Beverley Damonse, Dr Priscilla Mensah, Dr Dorsamy Pillay, Dr Linda Mtwisha, Professor Ramesh Bharuthram. 

On Wednesday, 2 September 2015 the Minister of Science and Technology delivered the keynote address at the University of the Western Cape launch of the Department of Science and Technology (DST) - National Research Foundation (NRF) Critical Thought in Africa Humanities.

NRF officially launched a new institutional forum to provide support to universities: a Flagship at the Centre for Humanities Research. The Flagship was a process which consisted of a presentation by UWC’s Centre for Humanities Research. There was an international panel that chose UWC as the recipient of the Flagship.

The Flagship is founded on three research thematics: Aesthetic Education, the Becoming Technical of the Human, and Migrating Violence. In an effort to engage further with members of the public, the Flagship will convene a public lecture series in Athlone, Cape Town, and establish a Factory of the Arts in the former District Six.

Professor Premesh Lalu, Director for the Centre of Humanities Research at UWC, elaborated further on the purpose of the Flagship: “The Flagship on Critical Thought in African Humanities is a platform for scholarly exchange, artistic creation and public inquiry into African political subjectivity, art and society, and technology and the human.

It is designed to host scholars and students from South African universities, public institutions and national and international research bodies in a collaborative initiative to forge the next generation of humanities scholars, committed to the demands of building a post-apartheid South Africa.”

Minister Naledi Pandor said she has high hopes for the DST-NRF-UWC Flagship on Critical Thought in African Humanities: “South African research on identity and transformation already has rich material to form the foundation for the early work of this Flagship. The Flagship offers collaboration opportunities to scientists in a range of fields that are not sufficiently explored collaboratively – customary law and democracy, history and culture, human origins, race and identity, and many others.”

NRF CEO, Berveley Damonse, said institutions of higher learning competed for the Flagship, but only UWC was successful, “These universities competed for this Flagship to find the strength of an institution, and today is the culmination of a journey which began last year”, she said.

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