SU professors receive A ratings from NRF
Two Stellenbosch University professors were officially recognised as A-rated NRF researchers at a function hosted by the National Research Foundation (NRF) in Cape Town on Thursday, 13 September.
Minister of Science and Technology Ms Naledi Pandor, Deputy Minister Mr Derek Hanekom and CEO of the NRF, Dr Albert van Jaarsveld, honoured excellence in research through the awarding of A and P ratings, the inaugural science team award as well as three special awards at this year’s ceremony.
Prof Michael Samways, Chair of the Department of Conservation Ecology & Entomology at SU, and Prof Simon Schaaf of the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health at SU’s Faculty of Health Sciences, were two of 22 South African researchers who received A ratings.
The prestigious NRF awards ceremony is an annual celebration of South Africa’s foremost researchers who have been recognised by their peers due to the impact, quality and the exemplary nature of their research outputs.
Prof Samways has dedicated his research to the study of invertebrate conservation (insect conservation), both on land and in water, covering important areas such as assessing impacts, migration, and identifying bioindicators of both environmental degradation and restoration.
As one of the early researchers into drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB), Prof Schaaf’s work has helped to broaden the understanding of this disease, particularly in children, and its management. He has also made inroads into the area of TB and HIV co-infection.
In addition to the awarding of the A and P ratings, three special awards were presented: The Lifetime Achievement award presented to Prof Tim Noakes, the Transformation of the Science Cohort award, which was presented to Prof Anusuya Chinsamy-Turan of the University of Cape Town, and the Champions of Research Capacity Development at South African Higher Education Institutions, which was awarded to Professor Kelly Chibale who is currently the South African Research Chair (SARChI) holder in Drug Discovery at the University of Cape Town’s Department of Chemistry.
This year also saw the inaugural Science Team Award being awarded to the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) Bid Team.