The initiative, called the Global Intercultural Project Experience (GIPE), is funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and coordinated by the Westphalian University of Applied Sciences, Germany. Additionally, universities from Peru and Indonesia are also partners in the project.
Students from NUST will be working with their counterparts from the partner universities to develop a base version for the new nationwide Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) portal.
The portal will be used by Namibia’s National Commission on Research, Science and Technology (NCRST).
“It is of utmost importance that the NCRST has a functionalised information system to effectively capture, monitor and evaluate STI information,” said Gernot Piepmeyer, NCRST’s Manager of Policies and Programme Development.
Prof Manfred Meyer, from the Westphalian University of Applied Sciences, said excitedly: “This will offer NUST students the opportunity to gain a truly Global Intercultural Project Experience, by working together with fellow students from around the world.” The project is funded for a period of four years, thus enabling four annual student projects to be implemented, giving almost 30 local students the opportunity to travel to Germany.
There they will also work with students from Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia (AJCUI) and the Universidad Católica San Pablo (UCSP) in Peru.
After a planning meeting held at Westphalian University in October 2019 and selecting the students to receive scholarships from DAAD, the main activities will kick-off during the course of this month.
At NUST, the project is fully integrated within the Advanced Software Development (ASD) Honours course in the Faculty of Computing and Informatics.
Prof Heike Winschiers-Theophilus from the Faculty, co-designed the GIPE project. “All students from the ASD course will be part of the project, supporting their fellows who will be selected to attend the Spring School,” she said.
The base version of the new STI portal will be presented to the NCRST in approximately five months’ time.