Division for Research Development
Welcome to Stellenbosch University

​Research Information

​Stellenbosch University (SU) has a vision to be established as a leading research-intensive university on the African continent by pursuing excellence and remaining at the forefront of its chosen focus  areas, by gaining national and international standing on the basis of its research outputs, by being relevant to the needs of the community, and by being enterprising, innovative and self-renewing. SU is one of the top research-focused universities in South Africa. 

According to the Department of Higher Education and Training's official report regarding the 2016 publications (assessed in 2017), the weighted research output per full-time SU staff member (both publications and postgraduate students) was 3.11, and the publication output per capita 1.58. This makes SU one the most research-productive institutions nationwide.

The University has 47 Research Chairs of which 27 are National Research Foundation (NRF)  SARChI chairs (South African Research Chairs Initiative), funded by the Department of Science and Technology. SU has one of the highest number of NRF-rated scientists in the country – 458 in 2018. 

More than 300 postdoctoral research fellows were hosted at SU in 2017. Approximately 49% of our PhD's were awarded to candidates from the previously disadvantaged black, coloured and Indian population groups.

SU has well-established, far-reaching, multi-layered networks of international partners, with more than 246 bilateral institutional arrangements in 57 ​countries across six continents. Turning to Africa, in 2017 SU had more than 350 active projects with 780 partners (institutions and individuals) in 43 countries.

SU as a university rooted in Africa needs to bear fruit for the people of our continent. The challenge for us is to be locally relevant, with regional impact, while also globally competitive. To achieve this goal, we need to continuously focus on the unique areas in which we have developed expertise over time and build collaborative networks as a knowledge partner in South Africa, the rest of the continent and further afield.