What you need to know:
The money will fund different research projects in the institutions of higher learning
At least eight universities and four organisations across the country have been allocated Shs15.4b by the European Union (EU) to carry out research in various fields.
The press statement from the EU Deputy Ambassador to Uganda, Mr Guillaume Chartrain, indicates that the grants will enhance the quality of research at higher institutions of learning and produce students with skills and solutions to today’s socio-economic challenges.
“The research that these universities and institutions will conduct will play an important role in providing knowledge-based solutions that drive socio economic progress, not only for the institutions or the students involved in the programme, but have broader economic impact on the country,’’ Mr Chartrain said.
Among the beneficiaries are Makerere University, Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST), Uganda Martyrs University, Mountain of the Moon University, and Makerere University Business School (MUBS).
Mr Chartrain said Erasmus + Capacity Building for Higher Education supports international cooperation projects based on multilateral partnerships between organisations active in the field of higher education.
“Interventions under this grant will not only address the modernisation of teaching programmes, but also take into account governance, management and the strengthening of higher education’s wider economic and social ecosystems,” he said.
A total of Shs15.4b has been distributed among universities who are supposed to conduct research in various projects listed by the EU. Makerere University has received the lion’s share.
According to the EU, Shs851.8m has been allocated to Bugema University and Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture. These are supposed to conduct research on climate-smart agro-preneurship education for livelihood and sustainability in eastern and southern Africa.
A total of Shs851.4m has been allocated to Uganda Christian University and Makerere University to carry out research on communicating migration and mobility e-learning programmes and newsroom applications for sub-Saharan Africa.
Another Shs850m has been allocated to Muni University, the Research and Education Network for Uganda, and Makerere University to carry out Applied Human Machine Intelligence in East Africa.
Boosting agriculture studies in sub-Saharan Africa has been allocated to Uganda Martyrs University and Mountains of the Moon University with Shs424m.
Strengthening capacity for ICT usage and policy reforms for relevant and quality masters research process management in Uganda has been assigned to Uganda National Council for Higher Education, Kyazze, Kankaka & Co. Advocates, Uganda Chapter for Social Responsibility Initiatives Ltd, Makerere University Business School, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, and Makerere University with Shs1b.
Innovation for sustainability and societal relevance: Partnerships in evidence-based higher education on food systems and climate change have been assigned to Mbarara University of Science and Technology and Makerere University with a Shs551m grant.
In September 2022, thirteen Ugandan graduate scholars won the prestigious EU funded Erasmus+ scholarships to study in Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Portugal, and Spain.
“These Ugandan students are currently pursuing graduate studies in Europe and our hope is that after completion, they will return to make a difference for Uganda in different spaces through innovation and problem solving,” Mr Chartrain said.
The Vice Chancellor of Makerere University, Prof Barnabas Nawangwe, said: “The EU and the African Union have agreed to increase research cooperation between the EU and AU universities. Makerere University has strategised to benefit from this initiative through which the EU is investing heavily. Makerere University has developed considerable capacity in research and that is why she has won quite a few grants from the various EU initiatives.”
About EU Erasmus +
Erasmus+ is the European Union’s programme to support education, training, youth and sport. The programme was established in 1987.
Eramus+ in 2021 had a total budget of €2.9 billion, with 19,000 projects, around 71,000 organisations and close to 649,000 participants in mobility activities.
In 2020 Erasmus+ supported almost 640,000 people in their studies, traineeships or voluntary work abroad. It funded around 126,900 organisations and some 20,400 projects.
- Makerere University
2. Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST).
3. Uganda Martyrs University
4. Mountain of the Moon University
5. Makerere University Business School
6. Muni University
7. Bugema University
8. Uganda Christian University
9. National Council for Higher Education
10. Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture
11. Kyazze, Kankaka & Co. Advocates
12. Uganda Chapter for Social
Responsibility Initiatives Ltd