Welcome to Stellenbosch University

Science Café Stellenbosch

​​​Science Café Stellenbosch is an initiative of the Faculty of Science at Stellenbosch University to promote the public discussion of science.

The aim of a Science Café is to bridge the gap between science and the general public by entering into a conversation in a non-academic environment, like a restaurant or café. There are already hundreds of Science Cafés all over the world.

Prof Louise Warnich, dean of the Faculty of Science at SU, says a Science Café is the ideal opportunity to involve the public in conversations about science: "Scientists have a responsibility to communicate the findings of their research, but we have an even greater responsibility to engage with the general public, and that in a language that everyone can understand."

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The next Science Café  

Discussion is led by: Prof Hugh Patterton, Director of the Centre for Bioinformatics and Computational Biology at SU

Developing a COVID-19 risk prediction platform using sewage water

Speaker: Prof Wolfgang Preiser, Dr Edward Archer and Dr Rabia Johnson

Date: 19 May 2021

Time: 18:00 - 19:00

Online Platform: MS Teams

Click here to join the meeting

When will the third wave of COVID-19 infections hit us?

What if we had an early warning system in place for all types of contagious diseases?

Prof Wolfgang Preiser and Dr Edward Archer from Stellenbosch University (SU), and Dr Rabia Johnson from the Medical Research Council (MRC), will explain how a national network of over 60 researchers from 26 institutions are working to establish a wastewater-based surveillance system for contagious diseases such as SARS-CoV2; the science behind the environmental fingerprinting of these diseases; and whether the current system is ready to predict a third wave of COVID-19. ​​​

More about the speakers

Prof Wolfgang Preiser is head of the Division of Medical Virology in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at Stellenbosch University.

Dr Edward Archer is a Research Fellow in the Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Science at Stellenbosch University, and one of the coordinators of the South African Collaborative Covid-19 Environmental Surveillance System (SACCESS)

Dr Rabia Johnson is deputy-director of the Biomedical Research and Innovation Platform (BRIP) at the Medical Research Council and an associate professor in medical physiology at Stellenbosch University.​​​​​

 Below: Well-known nature lover Dave Pepler in conversation with scientists Lester Davids, Jannie Hofmeyr and Gideon Wolfaardt about the evolution of skin colour, the wonder of the human cell, and your own personal microbiome at a previous Woordfees.