An exciting research initiative is underway at the University of Cape Town. The research is running under the brand of Aqua d’UCT, which seeks to enhance water research by promoting integration and interdisciplinary study. The study is being driven my MSc candidate Raymond Siebrits from the Department of Environmental and Geographical Science as part of his thesis.
aqueduct: noun, a bridge or viaduct carrying a waterway over a valley or other gap; an artificial channel for conveying water
aqua d’UCT: verb, to integrate water research
This research initiative can be described as meta-research of water research. It examines the water research space in South Africa and seeks to answer the following questions:
1. How has water research in South Africa evolved since the establishment of the Water Research Act No 34 of 1971?
2. What is currently being researched in South African water research?
3. What are the water research questions that should be prioritized in the South African context?
To achieve this, a number of activities are taking place for which we would like your input. The following studies are currently underway:
1. Bibliometric mapping of water research in South Africa: this exciting project aims to extract the research foci over time to show the evolution of water research by topics and themes using the scientific literature.
2. Stakeholder and participant analysis: this project seeks to discover who is currently researching what in South Africa.
3. Horizon scanning into the future: to uncover through stakeholder participation what is required by research in South Africa. This aims to develop prioritized lists of research questions and categories decided by the researchers, for the researchers.
If you are involved in the water sector in any capacity, or are interested in this study, then we encourage you to participate. The large scale survey will go live in October. Sign up now though as one sign up per week will win a Backsberg Wine Pack until the survey launch. Visit www.aquaduct.org.za and register!
By Raymond Siebrits (pictured above)