Sustainable Agriculture in South Africa (SASA)

This project aims to strengthen the capacity of Stellenbosch University (SU) and Conservation South Africa (CSA) in the area of research-led education and training in sustainable agriculture to benefit students, land-users, commodity groups and providers of extension services in South Africa.

Through the project a partnership is developing between these South African institutes and Wageningen University. Ultimately the project is meant to add value to the agricultural sector in South Africa by steering agricultural education, training and research towards greater environmental, economic and social sustainability.

Launching a new MSc on sustainable agriculture

A new academic programme will be designed and delivered in a manner that is innovative in South African agricultural education: a taught masters delivered in an interdisciplinary manner with attention for interactive teaching, practical assignments and in design very much linked with the demand from and context of the agricultural sector in the Western Cape.

Defining and rolling out the SASA research agenda

In planned consultation with stakeholders in the sector a relevant and demand-driven research agenda will be developed and used as basis for student research assignments as well as giving direction for joint research between project partners.

Anchoring education and research in the agricultural sector

Labour market needs assessments will be conducted to assess the need of the agricultural sector in South Africa for academic and vocational education in sustainable agriculture. Research 'indaba’s' will link academia with practitioners with similar aims. A reciprocal and more systemic relationship between university and the sector is expected to develop to replace more conventional linear extension approaches.

Linking academic education and research with vocational training

Academic education and research capacity is one but equally important is the design and delivery of training programmes at practitioners level: farm owners and workers, extension staff, managers and workers in the relevant value chains. In collaboration with vocational training institutes in the Cape relevant training products will be developed.