In its pursuit to increase the Postdoctoral Research Fellows and to leverage the limited financial resources available for the PDRF program, TUT, through its DVC: Research, Innovation & Engagement, in 2022 initiated discussions with the University of Johannesburg (UJ) on co-hosting Postdoctoral Research Fellows at both universities. The agreement was then sealed and a call for postdoctoral fellows was made public nationally and internationally.
Speaking on the partnership with UJ, Dr Vathiswa Papu-Zamxaka, TUT’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research, Innovation and Engagement said the discussion between the two universities to enter into an agreement on co-hosting PDRF’s was sealed with a Memorandum of Understanding in February 2023.
“This would allow intended research projects to be aligned with research areas of hosts at both universities. Thus far, we have recruited eight postdoctoral fellows, with five active at TUT and three at UJ. In addition, the agreement between the two universities allows for fellows to spend a year (50% of the PDRF’s tenure) at each university, effective from 1 May 2023, to conduct their research projects under the joint supervision of TUT and UJ’s highly knowledgeable researchers,” said Dr Papu-Zamxaka.
Through this collaboration of co-hosting PDRFs, both universities hope to grow the number of PDRFs who will significantly expand the research base and increase research outputs, as well as throughput of postgraduate students. The agreement will furthermore strengthen supervisory capacity for Master’s and Doctoral students at both universities, whilst developing the PFDR’s in their academic careers.