The activities of the project started with a kick-off meeting that took place in March 2017 and was attended by 4 representatives from UKZN, 2 from CODESRIA, 4 from CROP and 9 from other units at UiB. Participants of the meeting discussed whether the project should focus mainly on Masters or PhD students and they came to conclusion different activities would suit different student groups.
It was decided to use the Bergen Summer Research School (BSRS) 2017 as a platform to launch the first step of curriculum development at PhD level in connection with a course on “Agenda 2030: Poverty, Climate and Sustainability” offered by CROP and the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research, in collaboration with UKZN under the umbrella of the UTFORSK project.
Academic staff members from UiB and UKZN were involved in planning and teaching this course, and two of the lectures were recorded and have been made available online via the project website. The course offered comprised 33 academic hours and had a modular structure particularly apt for the long-term development of the project course curriculum.
In August/September 2017, UiB academic staff members Alberto Cimadamore and Noel Keenlyside visited UKZN. They held guest lectures/seminars for students, one public lecture (Alberto Cimadamore) and engaged in project planning activities.
The final mobility in 2017 was a visit by UKZN’s Sithembiso Myeni to UiB. Dr. Myeni gave an open lecture at the Bergen Resource Centre for International Development. He also held a seminar for students at the Department of Health Promotion and Development (HEMIL/UiB) and a lecture for students at the Department of Comparative Politics.
4 PhD students from the University of Bergen and University of KwaZulu-Natal (2 from UiB and 2 from UKZN) visited the University of the Western Cape, South Africa in the framework of UTFORSK project. They took part in the international workshop “Perspectives on the Democratic Developmental State” (27-28 February 2018) and presented their papers during the event.
A virtual reading room has been set up by the UKZN library and will start to be filled during 2018 for use by the project’s students.