ARM 2016-2017: UR /Sweden partnership sets to advance research to a new level

A week-long joint Annual Review Meeting took place at the University of Rwanda. Organized by UR-Sweden Programme for Research, Higher Education and Institutional advancement, the high level meeting brought together researchers and academics from UR, Swedish Universities and different stakeholders to reflect on the Programme achievements inline with research and capacity building.     

In his opening remarks, Prof. Philipp Cotton, the University of Rwanda Vice Chancellor hailed the Sweden Programme for its significant impact in ICT, research and staff capacity development. He noted that the Programme has organizationally and individually empowered the University academics and the community at large.

Opening remarks by Prof Cotton

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Charles Murigande, the UR Deputy Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement noted that the meeting is an opportunity for young people to share their research findings and demonstrating its impact to the community. He also said that UR-Sweden Programme has not only promoted UR research culture but also the improvement of teaching, learning and research in the quest to help the University to become a research-led university. 

Speaking on the occasion is Amb.Dr Charles Murigande

Murigande who oversees the activities of the Programme at UR also added that the collaboration has massively contributed to the recent milestone achieved by the University. He cited among others the fact that UR is the only University in Africa that competitively won four centres of excellence funded by World Bank. In addition, the University of Rwanda was named the 2nd most influential institution in East Africa due to impact of its publication.

In his remarks, Mikael Boström the Head of Development Cooperation at Sweden Embassy commended the collaboration that “has improved research environment and research management thanks to the financial contribution by the Government of Sweden through Sida”. 

Remarks by Mikael Boström-Embasssy of Sweden

He observed that the motive behind the support is not only to provide PhD and Master’s education but also to create the necessary condition for research at the University and more importantly instill the research culture. According to him, this leads to the academic freedom that the partnership seeks to cement as one of the key objectives of Sweden global strategy for research cooperation.  

“Academic freedom as an integral part of the research environment will be a key objective of the next phase of the Programme partnership with the University of Rwanda”  Boström noted.

Raymond Ndikumana, the Overall Coordinator of UR-Sweden Programme presented that the partnership has not just benefited the University of Rwanda, Swedish partners have benefited too in co-creating scientific knowledge in different areas. He revealed the fact of having a good number of PhD students, Swedish University have also built their capacity and expertise, but also new experience by undertaking research projects which normally they would not be involved in.

Remarks by Raymond; the Programme Overall Coordinator

 Besides, he said that the Programme has triggered the undertaking of PhD studies, which saw 109 staff enrolled and 41 already graduated. 109 grants were also provided while heavy investment in ICT and Library were equally witnessed.

Participants in ARM

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By  Darius Murangwa
Communications Officer