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Sweden & Uganda


Every country needs local capacity within the areas of importance for the country’s development in order to develop their own research base. Therefore, the Swedish bilateral research cooperation with Uganda started in 2000. Over the 21 years of collaboration, Sweden has invested more than 105 million USD in key areas that include institutional development, research management strengthening, post graduate training and scientific research.

The initial cooperation mainly focused on Makerere University in Kampala with cooperation of some 12 Swedish Universities. From 2010, four other public universities were introduced into the cooperation, namely, Gulu University, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Kyambogo University and Busitema University. The current and final agreement period (November 2015 - 30 June 2022) has a funding budget of SEK 320 million. The expected outcome of the current phase is to focus more on consolidating the research capacity of the 5 Ugandan Public Partner Universities (PPUs) to generate knowledge and promote research uptake for national and regional development.

The program consists of 17 research programs, 16 of which include the participation of scientists from 11 Swedish universities/research institutes collaborating with Makerere University and four other Partner Public Universities (Busitema, Kyambogo, Gulu and Mbarara University of Science and Technology). Projects are spread across teaching and service units. The five Makerere University colleges include Humanities and Social Sciences, Computing and Information Technology, Natural Sciences, Health Sciences and Agriculture & Environmental Sciences.

The largest share of the program budget consists of support to the training of staff members of these five universities to Master, PhD and post-doctoral levels. Swedish universities are involved as supervisors/mentors, supervision training and in the curriculum development of Master and PhD programs. The degree is awarded at Makerere University for locally trained PhDs. Some of the “Sandwich PhD” students who do their research and course work in both Uganda and Sweden are aiming for a so called “double degree” (a degree awarded from Makerere as well as from the collaborating Swedish universities/institute). In the current cooperation agreement alone, the program has awarded 389 staff members of the 5 Ugandan public universities of which 182 are Masters graduates, 120 PhD graduates (only 17 students on so called “sandwich mode” of training), 61 Postdocs and 26 small research grants.

The program also supports key research supporting elements. This entails institutional support to ICT, literature and e-resources to the library, laboratory equipment, Quality Assurance Directorate (QAD), integration of gender issues, Geographical Information Centre (GIS), Makerere University Centre for Health & Population Research (MUCHAP) and support to the development of university wide academic courses for PhD students (so called cross cutting courses). Finally, funding has also been allocated to program coordination at Makerere University (to the Directorate for Post Graduate Training, DRGT) and in Sweden (to the International Science Program, ISP). DRGT also coordinates Postdoctoral researchers, PhD and Master students from the four Partner Public Universities (PPUs).

In May 2022 the Embassy together with its partners will celebrate more than two decades of partnership in Research with Uganda.

Last updated 08 Feb 2022, 11.21 AM