Professor Wim de Villiers, Stellenbosch University’s Rector and Vice-Chancellor, met staff from across the University on Tuesday 15 November during his first official visit to the Claverton campus since taking office.

Stellenbosch, one of South Africa’s leading universities, has been an important strategic partner since 2013 with active collaborations between our Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies and their Department of Chemistry & Polymer Science, as well as our Water Innovation & Research Centre and Stellenbosch’s Water Institute.

Professor de Villiers and his wife Catherine were greeted by Professor Bernie Morley, Deputy Vice-Chancellor & Provost, before taking part in discussions about existing and potential research links with colleagues from the School of Management, Pharmacy & Pharmacology, Health, Chemical Engineering and Social & Policy Sciences.

Professor Stephen Ward said: “It was exciting to identify the potential for collaboration between their Centre of Infectious Diseases and our neuropharmacology and inflammation research, as well as their mental health information centre. Both could create strong applications to the RCUK Global Challenges Research Fund. Our epidemiological work, teaching and knowledge translation also showed real scope for productive connections. In short - lots of potential.”

After a tour of the Claverton campus with Mr Martyn Whalley, Director of Estates and Lucy Woodcock, SU President, our visitors met with President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Glynis Breakwell, to discuss recent developments in our partnership.

Dame Glynis noted: “Stellenbosch University is an excellent and much-valued partner. As part of the U4C Network, along with Zhejiang University and UNICAMP, we are working together to address major economic, political and social issues and influence policy makers nationally and internationally. This visit has enabled us to further strengthen our strategic relationship and to explore potential new research collaborations in a number of disciplines.”