Two national research chairs for the NWU
POTCHEFSTROOM - The Department of Science and Technology has awarded two national research chairs to the Potchefstroom Campus of the North-West University (NWU).
Prof Okkie de Jager was awarded the chair in Astro and Space Physics and Dr Holger Bettinger in Applied Molecular Modelling.
Prof De Jager has already received the President’s Award for Research from the National Research Foundation (NRF) twice in 1988 and 1992, and earlier this year he was a member of the international team of researchers who received the Descartes Prize for Science from the European Commission.
Dr Bettinger is a faculty member at the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry of the Ruhr University in Germany. He has received several awards for research in Germany and is a member of the German and the American Chemical Society.
According to Prof Manie Vosloo of the School of Chemistry, it is a great honour to have been awarded the chair and they are very excited about what it could mean for the expansion of the research field.
These chairs form part of the Department’s national Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI). The SARChI model is accepted worldwide to develop research possibilities to attract world-class researchers to the country and to attract qualified scientists back to the higher education sector.
The Department hopes to establish 210 chairs before the year 2010.