The International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) is presenting the 40th Young Scientists Summer Programme (YSSP), held each year during June to August in Austria. Since 1977, the annual programme has offered research opportunities to talented young researchers. South Africa, through the NRF, is the adhering body and national member organisation to IIASA.
Two South African-based PhD scholars, Ms Maggie Munthali and Ms Lavinia Perumal, have competitively been selected to participate in the YSSP. This year’s 52 participants were selected from a pool of 340 applications and represent the top young scientific talent from 28 countries. The young scientists will work closely with IIASA scientists on independent research projects.
Ms Munthali is pursuing a PhD in Geography at the University of Pretoria. Her research will assess land use and land cover changes and their implications on natural resources in Malawi. Ms Perumal is enrolled for a PhD at the University of Cape Town, aimed at understanding and mitigating the impacts of transport infrastructure on natural capital in various African regions.
The NRF supports the participation of the two scholars in the 2017 YSSP. The programme is aligned to the Southern African Systems Analysis Centre (SASAC), established in 2015, to provide an opportunity for early career researchers to advance their research under the supervision of senior South African and IIASA experts. For the 2017 intake, SASAC awarded twenty PhD scholarships on different themes within a Systems Analysis framework. SASAC is hosted by the Universities of the Western Cape, WITS, Limpopo and Stellenbosch.