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Senegal scientists told to collaborate to access funds

Senegalese researchers from different institutions will have to collaborate in order to access the country’s fund for agricultural research.

Thirteen Senegalese institutions signed the agreement on 25 January. It requires researchers to submit joint proposals to the National Fund for Agricultural Research and Agri-Industry instead of applying individually.

Ahmadou Lamine Ndiaye, who chairs a committee overseeing implementation of the agreement, said in a telephone interview from Dakar that the move is meant to reduce duplication of work.

“We did a survey and found researchers were working on the same subjects, but separately. They were ignoring each other and wasting money and time,” said Ndiaye, who is also president of the National Senegalese Academy of Science and Technology.

The 13 institutions include the Interstate School of Veterinary Science and Medicine of Dakar and the Cheikh Anta Diop University.

Nouhou Diaby, an advisor at the ministry of higher education and scientific research, said collaborations would help maximise the return from Senegal’s academic resources.

“A single institution does not have enough skills to do what they want, but if we pool together it will make a difference,” he said.

The aim of the collaborative research effort is to focus on national priorities, including helping farmers adapt to climate change.