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SOUTERN AFRICA: Expression of Interest: 2nd Call for membership


AU/NEPAD Southern African Network of Water Centres of Excellence (AU/NEPAD SANWATCE)

  • This is a call for Expression of Interest for Universities and Research Institutions to become members of the AU/NEPAD Southern African Network of Water Centres of Excellence (AU/NEPAD SANWATCE).
  • As this is the second call, membership is primarily targeted at SADC countries who do not currently have representation in the Network, and include institutions in Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC); United Republic of Tanzania, Seychelles, Mauritius, Madagascar, Swaziland and Lesotho.
  • Institutions from other SADC countries are also welcome to submit applications, and would be considered on an associate basis.
  1. About the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE
  2. Where do we get our mandate from?
  3. Aim of this call 
  4. Eligibility and institutional requirements.
  5. Submission and review process.
  6. Timeline.
  7. Review criteria.
  8. How to apply.
  9. Additional information.
  10. Enquiries.


The AU/NEPAD SANWATCE is a network of Higher Education- and Research institutions across Southern Africa, who conduct high-end scientific research on water and related sectors.


2. Where do we get our mandate from?

On 22 November 2006, the African Ministers responsible for Water and also the African Ministers responsible for Science and Technology (AMCOW and AMCOST) met in Cairo, Egypt. By resolution, delegates committed themselves to establish an African Network of Excellence in Water Sciences and Technology Development. The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AU/NEPAD) was also tasked to oversee the activities of the Water Centres of Excellence.

Based on this resolution, the Southern African Network of Water Centres of Excellence (SANWATCE) was established, focusing on addressing the Research and Capacity Development Needs within the Southern African Development Community (SADC). A similar network was also established in West-Africa, with a further objective to create networks in other regions in Africa.

Subsequently, at the 11th AMCOW General Assembly, by resolution directed the AU/NEPAD Water Centres of Excellence Programme “to develop a Human Capacity Development Programme aimed at addressing junior professional and technician level capacity challenges in the water sector”. Decision: EXCO/11/2013/CAIRO/17. (Cairo 2013)

In the SADC region, at the 25th Water Resource Technical Committee (WRTC) meeting held between 7-9 May 2013 in Lusaka, Zambia, members of the WRTC also approved the co-operation between the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE and WaterNet, whereby WaterNet would focus on Capacity Building and Training and NEPAD SANWATCE would focus on Research &Technology Transfer. In addition, it was also proposed and ratified by the SADC Ministers of Water that:

  • That the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE Business Plan be approved (Section 2.9.7);
  • The AU/NEPAD SANWATCE to be the implementing agent for the Water Research Fund for Southern Africa (WARFSA 2.0), a programme of SADC Water Division (Section 2.9.8).

To further institutionalise the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE in the SADC region, the SADC Minsters responsible for Science, Technology and Innovation, Education and Training, held in Maputo, Mozambique (June 2014), ministers noted and supported the activities of the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE and called upon Member States to nominate institutions to form part of the regional Network.

Through a first call for interest by NEPAD, the following (initial) members were selected as part of the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE:

  1. Stellenbosch University (South Africa) – as the hub
  2. International Centre for Water Economics and Governance in Africa (Mozambique) – Node
  3. University of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa) – Node
  4. University of Western Cape (South Africa) – Node
  5. University of Malawi (Malawi) – Node
  6. University of Zambia (Zambia) – Node
  7. University of Botswana (Botswana) – Node
  8. The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, CSIR (South Africa) – Node
  9. Polytechnic of Namibia (Namibia) – Node
  10. National University of Science and Technology (Zimbabwe) – Node

It is the aim of the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE to identify at least one institution from each of the 15 SADC countries, from where the objectives of the NEPAD SANWATCE network can be initiated.


3.    Aim of this call

As it is the objective of the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE to be a truly SADC-representative network, the aim of this call is to expand the network, primarily in the SADC-countries where the network does not have a representative node. These countries include Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC); United Republic of Tanzania, Seychelles, Mauritius, Madagascar, Swaziland and Lesotho.

The network do further welcome applications from institutions in other SADC countries where there is currently representative nodes, however, these applications will be considered on an associate basis. For a list of current institutions, click here: http://nepadwatercoe.org/centres-of-excellence/


4. Eligibility and institutional requirements

As per the original objectives, and approved by the AMCOW and ANCOST, institutions which fulfil the following criteria could indicate their interest to become a member of the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE:

  1. Institutional identity—an identifiable formal or informal organization with specific values, norms and rules;
  2. Existence of and ability to build and sustain a critical mass of internationally or regionally (African) reputable or recognized scientists and/or engineers, technicians, and technology innovators;
  3. An identifiable governance structure with a clear mechanism(s) and hierarchy for making decisions;
  4. Demonstrated role(s) to contribute to human development by adding knowledge to global science or generating specific products in a national or international economic system;
  5. A reasonable measure of stability of operating conditions and funding over a specified period of time;
  6. Organizational dynamism in terms of ability to adjust to and influence the external environment or demonstrated ability of an organization to renew itself and grow even during hostile external conditions;
  7. Institutional articulation largely judged by the organizations networking capabilities i.e. ability to forge and sustain productive partnerships with other institutions; and
  8. Relevance in an institution’s or network’s mission, programmes and outputs to sustainable development goals set by country and/or the international community.

Please refer to the following online document more info.


5.    Submission and review process

AU/NEPAD SANWATCE secretariat will launch a call for proposals.


A committee will be established to evaluate the institutional profiles. The committee will be composed of scientists, experts on capacity building projects, experts on institutional management, experts on new technologies of communication and information.

Should an application be successful, a process will initiate to finalise the network agreement.


6.    Timeline

As this is an open call, there are no deadline for submissions. Upon the submission of a completed application form, institutions will receive an acknowledgement of receipt, which will be sent within 48 hours. Applications will be reviewed by Review-Sub-committee, whereupon the results of the application will be communicated to the contact person, as indicated in the application form.


7.    Review criteria

With the establishment of the programme in 2006, the ministers adopted a clear set of criteria for institutions as set out in point 4. Eligibility and institutional requirements.


8.    How to apply

Applicants should complete an application form, which can be obtained by contacting the Programme Manager at [email protected]

Completed application forms can be submitted via e-mail to the Programme Manager of the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE at [email protected]

9.    Additional information

Additional information on the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE in general, can be accessed at nepadwatercoe.org


10. Enquiries

Please refer all enquiries to the Programme Manager of the AU/NEPAD SANWATCE at [email protected].

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