On 20-21 March 2017, a kick-off meeting was held in Bergen, Norway, with representatives of the CROP Secretariat, the University of Bergen (UiB), the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) and the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA). The main purpose of the meeting was to present, discuss and clarify the various goals of the “Partnership for Poverty and Sustainable Development Studies” project, as well as to plan activities for the entire project period. The Project is financed through the UTFORSK programme of the Norwegian Center for International Cooperation in Education (SIU).
In the long term, the project aims to consolidate an international epistemic community in the field of sustainable development and poverty reduction. Online teaching resources and a virtual reading room will be developed for students to increase the participation of those who cannot travel. At the same time, the curricula at the two co-operating universities will be expanded to target and educate young scholars on poverty-related issues. That will be achieved through staff and student mobility, PhD seminars and summer school courses.
The meeting in Bergen was supplemented by a roundtable discussion on “Sustainable Development in Africa: Issues and Challenges”, with Prof. Betty Munbangizi (UKZN) and Prof. Francisco Sozinho (CODESRIA), in conversation with Scientific Director Alberto Cimadamore (CROP).