The overarching vision of the University of Pretoria is to be a leading research-intensive university in Africa, recognised internationally for quality, relevance, impact, developing people, creating knowledge and making a difference locally and globally. Within the context of this vision, having a Centre for the Advancement of Scholarship can contribute to the development of outstanding research activities that cross the boundaries of disciplines.
Fragmented knowledge and extreme specialization in narrowly defined sectors of scholarship can allow universities to compete very successfully within these fields of scholarship, but little of this knowledge has been used to facilitate the progress of our communities and society. In order to provide an environment outside of the domains of faculties, in which there can be an exchange of ideas across disciplinary boundaries and across generations of scholars, the Centre for the Advancement of Scholarship was established in 2013 and is located in Old College House in the heart of the Hatfield Campus. Its central purpose is to provide a locus for undertaking and debating new ideas in an environment that faciltates interaction between senior scholars, eminent visiting scholars, postgraduate students and postdoctoral fellows.
The Centre brings together and provides the required intellectual home for senior scholars, postdoctoral fellows and postgraduate students to conduct scholarly debates across disciplines. Their work is conducted in a setting where it can be used to address important social issues within a multidisciplinary perspective. Of particular emphasis will be the contribution of the Humanities and Social Sciences to these debates.