Within the South African National Development Plan, 'Vision 2030', education in general and higher education in particular were highlighted as main drivers of change. Within our country strategy with South Africa, we acknowledge this role of driver of change and wish to contribute to the improvement of local higher education. The following main themes are identified for all of our future interventions in South Africa:
- Food security. Subthemes: Biotechnology, aquaculture, food production & value chain, animal sciences & production.
- Environment. Subthemes: water resource management, climate change.
- Health. Subthemes: Primary healthcare, public health, HIV/AIDS.
- Social sciences. Subthemes: Good governance, urban development, communication, local community development, language development.
The country strategy identifies the following main transversal and cross-cutting themes:
- Institutional strengthening. Subthemes: Institutional policy, academic learning, research policy and culture.
- ICT. Subthemes: E-learning & distance learning, network development.
Regarding the eligible academic institutions, a focus on the rural areas should be prioritised and as such, collaboration should be sought with universities in those areas. The Comprehensive Universities and the Universities of Technology still have a substantial amount of ground to make up for their Traditional University counterparts in South Africa. It is therefore preferable that we take these differences into account and create a strategic tendency to give priority to cooperation partnerships between Flemish academics and academic staff based at Comprehensive Universities and at Universities of Technology.