- research in the marine and coastal environment -

The National Research Foundation (NRF), the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) and the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) jointly support the activities of the South African Network for Coastal and Oceanic Research (SANCOR). SANCOR promotes, facilitates and co-ordinates excellence in marine and coastal research and education for the benefit of South Africa. In 2006, SANCOR developed the Society, Ecosystems and Change (SEAChange) Research Programme which was implemented for funding in 2007. The vision of the SEAChange Programme is to provide cutting-edge research to generate the necessary knowledge that will support management in achieving a healthy and productive marine and coastal environment for the benefit of all current and future South Africans. This programme is structured into four interdependent themes on Ecosystems and Change, Ecosystems and Society, Ecosystem Functioning and Marine Biotechnology.

The call for 2011 funding in the SEAChange Programme primarily seeks research applications which address one of the five identified priority topics (see below). Applications that deal with research outside of these priority topics but that still fall within the broad framework of the SEAChange Programme will also be accepted. However, funding for these applications will be considered on a competitive basis after strategic prioritisation has been implemented for applications addressing the priority topics.

Priority topics

·        Topic 1:     Broadening knowledge bases for marine and coastal resource governance

·        Topic 2:     Building integrated marine and coastal governance systems

·        Topic 3:     The impact of new marine and coastal policies and legislation on social structures and relations in coastal communities

·        Topic 4:     The development and application of innovative tools for enhanced pollution monitoring and management in the marine and coastal environment

·        Topic 5:     Cost analyses of marine and coastal pollution

A two-tiered assessment process will be followed that includes postal peer-review and panel review. Applications submitted to this programme will be assessed according to a range of criteria.  These criteria include the track record of the applicant, scientific merit of the application, issues of equity and redress, collaborative efforts, and the potential impact of the research.  Funding will be allocated competitively based on the comments and scores derived from this process and strategic prioritisation. The funding duration for the research is up to three years –starting in 2011.

The application system for research project submissions will open on the 30 June 2010. All applications must be submitted via the NRF’s Interim system at http://nrfinterim.nrf.ac.za. Please select the Knowledge Fields Development (KFD) Call under Create New Application. The NRF closing date for applications is 31 August 2010.  All applications must be endorsed by the research office of the principal applicant.  Incomplete and late submissions will not be accepted by the NRF.

Please direct all queries to: Ms Mmamokete Mabuela, Grant Officer, Tel: +27 (0) 12 481-4088, Fax: +27 (0) 86 562 9590, Email: mabuela@nrf.ac.za or Ms Ndileka Qamba-Mtwazi, Liaison Officer, Tel: +27 (0)12 481- 4161, Fax: +27 (0) 86 541 9538, Email: Ndileka@nrf.ac.za

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