Pretoria, Tuesday, 3 October 2023 – As a buildup to the 18th Africa Young Graduates and Scholars (AYGS) Conference, the Human Sciences Research Council’s Africa Institute of South Africa (AISA) is hosting a series of online masterclasses from October 2023 until January 2024.
The masterclass series is aimed at providing a comprehensive understanding of the AYGS Conference’s main theme, Acceleration of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Implementation: Towards Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development in Africa.
The masterclasses are open to all selected AYGS participants/delegates and members of the public. Conference delegates are required to attend classes that pertain to their conference papers and presentations. However, that does not prevent them from attending all sessions if they wish to do so. Classes will cover the following four key thematic areas:
The role of the AfCFTA in catalysing climate action, green economy, and just transition: This session will explore how the AfCFTA can contribute to Africa’s efforts to combat climate change, promote a green economy, and ensure a just transition. In addition, it will discuss the potential of trade policies in promoting sustainable practices and green technologies. Date: 2 October 2023 | Time: 14:00 – 15:30. Lecture byProf Senia Nhamo | Associate Professor, School of Economics and Financial Sciences, UNISA.
Governance, peace, and security in the implementation of the AfCFTA: This session will explore the role of good governance, peace, and security in the successful implementation of the AfCFTA. It will discuss how a stable political environment can facilitate trade and economic growth, and how the AfCFTA can contribute to peacebuilding efforts in the African region. Date: 3 October 2023 | Time: 14:00 – 15:30. Lecture by Ambassador Solly Mollo | Major General (rtd), HE Prof, Embassy of South Africa in Guinea.
The role of science, technology, and innovation in the implementation of the AfCFTA: This session will highlight the importance of science, technology, and innovation in leveraging the benefits of the AfCFTA. It will discuss how technological advancements can facilitate trade, improve competitiveness, and foster innovation. Date: 4 October 2023 | Time: 14:00 – 15:30. Lecture byDr Lisho Mundia | Director of Research and Innovation, Ministry of Higher Education, Technology and Innovation, Namibia.
Agriculture and food system transformation: This section will focus on how the AfCFTA can catalyse the transformation of Africa’s agriculture and food systems. It will examine the potential of intra-African trade in enhancing food security, promoting agricultural innovation, and driving sustainable development. Date: 5 October 2023 | Time: 14:00 – 15:30. Lecture by Wandile Sihlobo | Chief Economist, Agricultural Business Chamber of SA (Agbiz)
The annual AYGS Conference is a research capacity-building project, which was conceived in 2005 with the aim of building a body of knowledge and to project the African ‘voice’ into various global discussions.
The project is further intended to bridge the existing gap of expertise in knowledge production on African affairs by developing a society of knowledge producers among the youth and emerging academics.
The 2024 AYGS will be held in Nairobi, Kenya from 6 to 7 March 2024. It will be held under the theme, Acceleration of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Implementation: Towards Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development in Africa.
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About the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC)
The HSRC was established in 1968 as South Africa’s statutory research agency and has grown to become the largest dedicated research institute in the social sciences and humanities on the African continent, doing cutting-edge public research in areas that are crucial to development.
Our mandate is to inform the effective formulation and monitoring of government policy; to evaluate policy implementation; to stimulate public debate through the effective dissemination of research-based data and fact-based research results; to foster research collaboration; and to help build research capacity and infrastructure for the human sciences.
The Council conducts large-scale, policy-relevant, social-scientific research for public sector users, non-governmental organisations and international development agencies. Research activities and structures are closely aligned with South Africa’s national development priorities.
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