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Library Research Week a ‘beacon of inspiration’ for research excellence
Author: Corporate Communication & Marketing / Korporatiewe Kommunikasie & Bemarking [Anél Lewis]
Published: 14/05/2024

​​The importance of striving for excellence in all aspects of the research process falls under the spotlight during Stellenbosch University's (SU's) annual Library Research Week, taking place from 13 to 17 May 2024.

With this in mind, and aligned with one of the University's core values, the theme of this year's programme is 'Let's achieve excellence in research'. The official opening of the week's events was marked by the announcement of a new data management system for researchers. SunDMP (data management plan) is the culmination of years of work and planning, said Ms Ellen Tise, Senior Director: Library and Information Services. “It comes six years after the launch of SU's internationally recognised SUNScholar Data repository."

Addressing guests at the launch of Library Research Week, Ms Ellen Tise, said: “This is a week to demonstrate the value and power of collaboration and partnerships." She also said research should have impact and strong links with the United Nations' 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs).

Prof Sibusiso Moyo, SU Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Postgraduate Studies, as the keynote speaker for the launch of Library Research Week, hailed the event as a “beacon of inspiration for achieving research excellence" in alignment with the 4th SDG of ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education.

She alluded to the many challenges, including poverty, water scarcity, inequality and energy resources, that impede the realisation of the full African potential. “As universities, we have a role to play in generating knowledge to deal with these challenges." Moyo also emphasised the importance of research for impact, as guided by the African context.

SU is making great strides in its research for impact and innovation, said Moyo. Highlights include SU's participation in several joint Africa-Europe Clusters of Research Excellence (CoREs) created by the African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) and The Guild of European Research-Intensive Universities (The Guild), the recent naming of Prof Tulio de Oliveira in Time magazine's inaugural 2024 TIME100 Health list, and its hosting of the SU-led National Institute for Theoretical and Computational Sciences (NITheCS), said Moyo.

She added that SU was working hard to ensure better representation and inclusivity among its researchers and aspirant academics. “We need to bring in new players." Moyo highlighted the recently launched SUNRISE (Stellenbosch University Research & Innovation Strategic Excellence) programme, aimed at boosting mid-career academics eyeing the professoriate. Unlike other development programmes already in place, this one emphasises academic mentorship and coaching.

In conclusion, Moyo said SU's many successes in research and innovation could be attributed to the library and the access it provides to the latest information. 

 Webinar programme for Library Research Week 2024

13 May -  Programme Launch
14 May -  Let's kickstart the research process
15 May -  Let's excel in research strategies
16 May -  Let's utilise tools for research
17 May -  Let's strive for research excellence, in the face of adversity

Each day will cover theme-specific aspects related to the research process.
These webinars will be presented by Library staff, experts from other SUN divisions and vendors from well-known research databases.

  • For more information: Kirchner van Deventer (021) 808 2623 or Siviwe Bangani on (021) 808 4641

​Photo: Stefan Els