Connecting excellence – COST in South Africa

03-04 December 2019, Pretoria, South Africa

SA-EU Partnership Day

Representatives from European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) travelled to Pretoria, in the first week of December to promote the COST Programme and the benefits of COST Action participation for South African researchers.

The South Africa – European Union Partnership Day on 03 December, was hosted by the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) and the European Union. The aim of the day was to bring researchers and innovators together with science councils, the government and representatives from the private sector.

From left: Dr Mickael Pero, Science Officer for COST, Ms Ntombi Mchuba, Assistant Director Strategic Partnerships, Mr Cecil Masoka, Acting Chief Director: International Resources, Ms Tugela Matubatuba, Deputy Director:Strategic Partnerships, Mr Toto Matshediso, Deputy Director Strategic Partnerships, Ms Vinny Pillay, Senior Science and Technology Representative to the EU

The event was opened by Daan du Toit, Deputy Director General, Department of Science and Innovation and Ambassador, Riina Kionka, from the European Union Delegation in South Africa, who stated “science is not an individual sport, we need networks such as COST”. 


Ronald de Bruin, Director of the COST Association gave a presentation on Promoting and spreading research excellence, which was followed by a presentation by Mickael Pero, Science Officer for COST, on the COST Programme, including the impact of COST Actions and how researchers could join one. Attendees heard personal accounts of participation and learnt about the added value of participation and the DSI instruments associated to COST and the national application process for South African researchers.



Innovations Bridge – Science Forum South Africa

On the 04 December, Ronald de Bruin represented COST at Science Forum South Africa, during a panel discussion entitled ‘Mind the gap! The role of professional, globally connected research and innovation (R&I) managers in advancing scientific impact’

The panel session aimed to provide a global overview of Research and Innovation (R&I) management and its role in bridging the gap between research and innovation with impact. The session had a strong focus on the challenges R&I managers in South Africa faced and available routes for them that could build skills and capacities, enabling research institutions to better bridge gaps.

COST and South Africa

COST Actions work with numerous research institutions and universities based in South Africa, mainly focusing on areas of health, raw materials, and the circular economy. South Africa became COST’s first Partner Member in April 2019, during the 206th Committee of Senior Officials meeting held in Bucharest, Romania.


Related stories:

South Africa becomes the first COST Partner Member

Information on events attended:

SA-EU Partnership Day

Science Forum South Africa (SFSA)