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Community Talks

Community Talks is a monthly webinar where experts from Flanders and abroad can meet and share their knowledge & academic research.

With this platform, we aim to build sustainable research connections and increase local (societal) impact through knowledge sharing on a global scale.

Wednesday 25 September, 11h00 - 12h00 (CET)

"Erasmus & VLIR-UOS – a winning team for impactful projects in East-Africa"

  • Tom Peeters, International Coordinator IT Department, Coordinator ITP at Karume Institute of Science & Technology, AP University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • Dirk Van Merode, International Project Coordinator IT Department, Coordinator Erasmus+ CBHE project AHUMAIN, AP University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • Abid Businge Weere, South Coordinator Erasmus+ CBHE project ACTEA & AHUMAIN, Coworker at VLIRUOS IUC at Mountains of the Moon, Innovent Consult Kampala

Don't miss out and register here!


Towards sustainable food systems: Contrasting Food Insecurity and Abundance

31 July 2024

Food system activities are increasing putting pressure on planetary boundaries. Farmers are angry and consumers concerned. While we are far from the goal to reach zero hunger, over 2 billion people suffer from overweight and obesity. Healthier diets derived from more sustainable food systems are needed.

This community talk deals with some key challenges and opportunities of our food system, and builds up on the outcomes of the global food security conference that took place in Leuven in April 2024.


Tessa Avermaete is postdoctoral researcher at KU Leuven. Her key areas of interest and expertise are food and nutrition security, sustainable food systems, agriculture and sustainable diets. She strongly beliefs in the constructive dialogue with all stakeholders, an evidence-based approach for food and farming policies, and charismatic leadership as pillars for building a more sustainable food system.

As EU project manager at the Sustainable Food Economies Research Group (KU Leuven), she aims at contributing to these pillars.

Don't miss out and register here!

Check out our previous talks

The Tanzania experience, from a concept via research to a policy: improving health of school children with a new community based intervention!

School-aged children harbour high malaria parasitaemia in most endemic areas of sub-Saharan Africa and constitute the main reservoir of malaria and thus fuel the transmission of the disease.

Therefore, a clinical study in North eastern Tanzania assessed if preventive treatment of malaria in schoolchildren (IPTsc) is a feasible, acceptable and effective tool to reduce malaria and malaria related anaemia. The results were such that, for evidence of the operational feasibility and effectiveness, the Ministry of Health followed immediately and sponsored and executed an implementation study involving over 73,000 school children from 127 primary schools.

This, in its turn, led to a policy brief developed to guide the introduction and practice of IPTsc in moderate to high endemic areas, and IPTsc will be rolled out in one third of Tanzania. Meanwhile, this strategy is recommended by the WHO malaria guideline 2023.


  • Prof. JP Van geertruyden, Global Health Institute, University of Antwerp
  • Dr. Geofrey Makenga, MD, PhD Global Health Institute, University of Antwerp & National Institute for Medical Research (NIMR) Tanga, Tanzania
  • Dr. Abdallah Lusasi (Head, Case Management-National Malaria Control Program/Ministry of health, Tanzania

Facilitating multi-stakeholder partnership to foster sustainable shark fisheries in Tanzania

In recent years, the Western Indian Ocean region has seen drastic decline in key fisheries due to the combined effects of illegal fishing, habitat degradation, overfishing, and climate change.

Since sharks grow slowly and produce few youngs, the shark fishery is the mostly affected. Hence, many species of sharks are currently classed as threatened. Despite the existence of regulations against exploitation of the endangered sharks, due to lack of adequate taxonomic expertise and poor coordination between the policy makers and law enforcers, illegal trade of the protected sharks still occur. Also, the catch data are recorded on papers which may take long to reach the Fisheries Department.

This project will develop a Smartphone application for identification of the landed sharks and an electronic logbook to enable fisheries officers to record and share catch data with managers and stakeholders in real time. To ensure capacity building, the project will provide scholarship to 1 MSc, internship to 5 BSc students, and training to 20 in-service personnel. All research findings will be hosted in open systems.


  • Prof. Dr. Marc Kochzius, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Faculty of Science and Bioengineering Sciences, Department of Biology, Marine Biology
  • Dr. Cyrus Rumisha, Department of Biosciences, Sokoine University of Agriculture

Looking for more ?

Missed out a Community Talk, check our YouTube channel

Are you interested in getting in touch with one of our speakers? Or looking for more info on a particular project? Or even interested in presenting your own project?

Contact us at communitytalks@vliruos.be

Change towards an e-portfolio is not easy, it is a long learning process. But progress is even more satisfying when working on it together.

Olive Tengera, University of Rwanda

Finally we took the time and energy to bring all information together and present to a broader public

Leo Van Audenhove (Vrije Universiteit Brussel)

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The success of the Community Talks is of course closely linked to the active engagement of our community. By sharing our promo video or invitations to the webinars in your network, you help our Community Talks to grow.