The traditional relationship between the developed world and developing one is about to be turned on its head. New scientific training programs will allow Africans to exploit their own national resources, rather than outside interests exploiting them. Millions of dollars in grants to several African science institutions will train local researchers lead operations to discover, mine, and use the rich mineral resources found in many African nations. While some of the money will go to medical training and efforts to preserve the coastal environments on the vast continent, I am most intrigued by the money that's going to materials science. According to

Lesley Cornish, from the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa and AMSEN's academic director, says much of the money will be spent on bursaries and travel expenses for students to visit tutors at participating universities - including the University of Botswana, the University of Nairobi in Kenya and the Federal University of Technology in Nigeria. AMSEN will provide students with a pool of research mentors and facilities in Botswana, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria and South Africa, Cornish told SciDev.Net. She adds that, aside from purchasing equipment, "an amount has also been earmarked to retain staff and researchers so that they can help build up their universities".


This could be the first stage in moving away from a post-colonial era in Africa to an era where the lingering effects of colonialism are no longer felt at all. Image via Platinum Today. African Science on the Rise [SciDev]