The governments of South Africa and Norway have both given oceans and the blue economy high priority over the last few years, emphasizing the importance of maintaining clean and healthy oceans while ensuring the sustainable use of ocean resources for growth and development. In their regular bilateral consultations, the two countries have agreed to strengthen cooperation in the fields of STI and higher education, the marine and maritime sectors, energy, environment and climate change.
One of the instruments to promote this cooperation is the bilateral research program SANOCEAN 2018-2023, “South Africa – Norway Co-operation on Ocean research, including blue economy, climate change, the environment and sustainable energy" that started in 2018 with the signing of a framework agreement and the launching of a call for proposals. The programme is funded jointly by the South African Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Pretoria. The programme is managed by a joint Secretariat composed of officials from the National Research Foundation (NRF) and the Research Council of Norway (RCN). In November 2018, 10 joint research projects were granted funding from SANOCEAN.
In accordance with the SANOCEAN Framework Agreement, each project is required to present their updated plans for their activities at a launch conference, at which the audience is invited to ask questions and provide comments. Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth has graciously accepted to be the host of this launch conference, and the proceedings will take place 25-27 March at Nelson Mandela University’s North Campus Conference Centre. It has been decided to seize this opportunity to combine the launching of the SANOCEAN projects to other ocean-related events of mutual interest for the two countries.
Anybody interested in bilateral cooperation between South Africa and Norway is hereby invited to attend this conference – with the objective to strengthen existing relationships and encourage further joint research, innovation and business development activities to the benefit of both countries. The motto for the conference is:
Ocean Health and Blue Business Development
The core proceedings, obligatory to the PIs of the SANOCEAN projects, will take place on day 1 and 2 of the conference, while day 3 offers ample opportunities to gather information and forge new relationships during several parallel activities and site visits:
Monday 25 March AM Ocean focus in South Africa and Norway
Monday 25 March PM Social impact and economic development
Tuesday 26 March AM Microplastic and sewage
Tuesday 26 March PM Oceanography, aquaculture and energy
Wednesday 27 March
Field trip to SAIAB in Grahamstown (with a stopover at Sundays River).
Workshop on RDI-partnerships at the Ocean Sciences Campus at Nelson Mandela University.
Excursion into Algoa Bay with focus on marine waste, by SST.
For business-oriented attendees, Innovation Norway in South Africa is available to organize business-to-business meetings with relevant companies and institutions in Durban and/or Cape Town. For more information, please send us an email at email@example.com or phone our office in Pretoria at +27 12 364 0700.