Our Programmes

Welcome to our Programmes page. Here, you will find a range of programmes and cross cutting activities that will help you understand the scope of work at Future Africa.

To get started, simply select a challenge domain from the left or explore our cross-cutting activities, which cover a range of topics and themes. And don't forget to check back regularly, as we are always adding new programmes and activities.

    • Africa Week

      Africa Week is the University of Pretoria’s biennial science leadership event. It’s taking place in May this year in strategic partnership with South Africa’s Department of Science and Innovation and the National Research Foundation. At this event, we will convene the leadership of prominent African and global scientific networks and international, transdisciplinary initiatives, plus host a series of topical dialogues on the theme ‘Open Africa, Open Science’.

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    • African Science Leadership Programme

      The African Science Leadership Programme (ASLP) is an initiative of the University of Pretoria and the Global Young Academy, with the support of Robert Bosch Stiftung. It aims to grow mid-career African academics in the areas of thought leadership, team management and research development, to enable them to contribute to the development of a new paradigm for science in Africa, focused on its contribution to solving the complex issues facing both Africa and the global community.

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    • Futures Literacy Incubator

      The Future Africa Futures Literacy Incubator is a new centre that is dedicated to: 1) understanding how being prepared for the future plays a role in driving innovation and embracing complexity, and 2) designing processes that use collective intelligence to create knowledge and make sense of complex emergent reality. This, in turn, leads to more innovative and resilient approaches as we seek to turn human aspirations into reality.

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    • Transdisciplinary research for transformation

      The Transdisciplinary (TD) approach to research is a cornerstone of the University of Pretoria’s (UP) current strategy. Championing and supporting TD are explicit and bold steps towards accelerating and amplifying the impact of UP research and scholarship.

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    • New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre (NZAGRC) Greenhouse Gas Measurement (GGM) Project

      NZAGRC GGM involves innovation and research on challenges in the agricultural sector, addressing issues such as sustainable agriculture, indigenous development, and climate change across southern Africa. The central focus is to support scientific capability and institutional capacity to track agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the region.

    • Food and Livelihood Resilience from Neglected Plant Species in Western and Southern Africa (FORENS)

      FORENS aims to understand and assess the potential of neglected and underutilised plant species (NUS), with the aim of enhancing the resilience of agro-ecosystems and local communities in Western and Southern Africa to environmental change. The project seeks to produce knowledge that can be used to accelerate food production in Africa while contributing to climate-change adaptation, supporting agrobiodiversity, and improving human health through balanced diets.

    • Climate, Land, Agriculture, and Biodiversity (CLAB-Africa)

      The Climate, Land, Agriculture, and Biodiversity (CLAB-Africa) project is a Future Africa (University of Pretoria) initiative hosted under the African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Food Systems (ARUA-SFS). CLAB-Africa aims to provide a platform for Africa’s scientific community to contribute to the developmental work of African governments and development institutions in the form of science-based, actionable recommendations within four identified clusters: (i) climate impact on food systems, (ii) land restoration and biodiversity, (iii) people-animal-ecosystems health and wellbeing, and (iv) land-water-energy resources use.

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    • Feed, Protect, Care Global Collaborative PhD Platform

      The Feed, Protect, Care Global Collaborative PhD Platform is a collaboration between the University of Montpellier and the University of Pretoria. This innovative response to the imperatives of open science and open education focuses on the interconnected societal missions of feeding, caring for, and protecting people, places, and the planet. The platform aims to strengthen the capacity of the global scientific community to inform and support critical transformations to ensure sustainable futures at local to global levels.

    • Promoting transformative research in and for Africa

      Our Research Chairs continuously convene large transdisciplinary groups of stakeholders to tackle the most persistent problems facing our world today. In doing this, Future Africa spearheads innovation when it comes to deploying transformative research, informs and supports policy and public action for equitable and sustainable African societies, and inspires science-based sustainability transformations elsewhere in the world.

    • Developing transformative research leadership capacities

      We believe that the next generation of science systems leaders will act as agents of change in both science and society. We strive to act as a catalyst by training, mentoring and connecting a new generation of global research leaders who will lead the necessary trans formations of science and society from within Africa.

    • Building transformative global partnerships for African Research

      A central pillar of our platform is a deep and diverse network of African and international collaborators. We carefully and diligently build this network that we believe will act as the gateway to Arica’s rich and diverse scientific community, while simultaneously projecting the voice of African sciences on the global stage. Our partnership model is based on equity and inclusiveness

    • Fostering a culture of dialogue and action

      To act as an effective catalyst for change, Future Africa aims to stimulate bold ideas and disruptive thinking on how research can make a meaningful difference to real world problems. This objective is not only embedded in all the work we do, but is also more formally enshrined in the Future Africa Dialogue Series, which brings key stakeholders in the scientific community together to discuss and debate changes needed in global science systems

  • FAR-LeaF Fellowship

    The Future Africa Research Leader Fellowship (FAR-LeaF), funded by the Carnegie Corporation, is a two-year research fellowship programme, focussed on developing transdisciplinary research and leadership skills, to address the complex, inter-linked challenges of health, well-being, and environmental risks in Africa. The FAR-LeaF programme recognises the value of creating a long-term network of future-focussed science leaders with transdisciplinary research skills, who can address the challenges of a post-Covid-19 society.

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  • Future Earth, Africa Hub Leadership Centre

    Future Earth is a global network of scientists, researchers, and innovators collaborating for a more sustainable planet. In 2023, Future Africa will be supporting the establishment of an African Leadership Centre for Future Earth in partnership with the National Research Foundation and Rhodes University. The Centre will work to advance sustainability science on the continent, elevating African scientists into global dialogues and decision-making fora and building strong grassroots networks of sustainability scientists.

  • Science Systems Leadership Academy

    The Science Systems Leadership Academy strives to catalyse a change in African and global science systems by identifying individuals who are transitioning into leadership roles in scientific organisations globally, and equipping them with the international support networks, critical skills, and knowledge that they will need to drive forward a co-created vision of and for science in Africa.

  • International Science Council Scoping Project

    Future Africa is leading a two-year scoping and development process that will inform the ISC’s future presence in Africa. In the two years, Future Africa will convene a consortium of African partners to identify the need for and the ideal nature of a longer-term ISC role and related institutional presence on the continent.

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  • Solidarity

    Fight against poverty:

    Under this research theme, different perspectives and strategies for poverty eradication will be pursued.

    The (global) commons

    This theme will focus on global environmental issues, including climate change, oceans and biodiversity.

    The Chair is currently assisting the African States on an “Effective Policy Implementation Measures for Addressing Drought under the UN Convention to Combat Desertification” project.


    This theme will focus on issues of social and economic development.

  • Governance

    Human rights

    This theme will address all issues of human rights, with a strong focus on dignity. Particular projects envisioned under this project concern human trafficking. Other research themes will cover human rights and technology.

    Institutions (national, regional and/or global)

    These themes will look at how institutions may be used for the promotion of the broad objective of the Chair and also how they may be abused in a way that negatively impacts the broad objective.

  • Freedom from violence


    This theme will address the root causes of conflict, humanitarian considerations in conflict, and strategies to end conflict.

    State-sponsored violence

    At a more domestic level, the theme will address various aspects of State-sponsored violence including police violence, and extra-judicial killings.