Posted on January 21, 2010

The programme is designed to celebrate the achievements of African scientists and to promote all efforts to transform scientific research into entrepreneurship and to attract investments to Africa. Not only will the programme encourage the science community and the public to participate in scientific engagements towards addressing critical problems in Africa, it also contributes towards raising the profile of science and technology and building a scientific culture among African citizens.

The head of the Department of Geology at UP, Prof Pat Eriksson entered the awards programme as he has made a tremendous scientific achievement and his contribution through science has had an impact on the socio-economic development of Africa. Prof Eriksson has established an international collaborative effort known as the Global Pre-Cambrian Sedimentation Syndicate which has interacted to study the evolution of the Pre-Cambrian Earth with special emphasis on basin analysis. He is a Fellow of the Geological Societies of Africa and of South Africa, and member of both the New York Academy of Sciences and Academy of Sciences of South Africa. Prof Eriksson is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of African Earth Sciences and is an associate editor of Gondwana Research and of the Journal Marine and Petroleum Geology. During his career, he had authored and co-authored over180 papers in geological journals and books. He has also received the Exceptional Achievers Award three times, as well as the Chancellor’s Medal, and the South African Medal of the S2A3.

According to Prof Eriksson, the Scientific Awards Programme is actually meant “to stress the critical importance of the science-technology-engineering triad for the upliftment of all African societies, and to publicise the importance of this career path for the young generations of the continent. This is a deeply humbling honour and one for which many other scientists are far more eminently qualified.”

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