RUFORUM - Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture Limited by Guarantee

RUFORUM is a continental level association of 85 agricultural universities operating in 35 countries. Its mission is to ‘strengthen the capacities of universities to foster innovations responsive to the demands of small-scale farmers through the training of high quality researchers, the output of impact oriented research, and the maintenance of collaborative working relations among researchers, farmers, national agricultural research institutes and governments’.

RUFORUM key activities are to:

1.Train a critical mass of Masters and PhD graduates who are responsive to stakeholder needs and national/regional development needs;

2. Develop collaborative research and training facilities that achieve economies of scope and scale;

3.Improve the adaptive capacities of universities to produce high quality and innovative research and training that can contribute to policy and development practice;

4.mainstream new approaches within university teaching and learning and the sharing of knowledge;

5.Increase the participation and voice of women in agricultural research, production and marketing.

RUFORUM Governance is done through its Board of Directors that are the 85 member Vice Chancellors. Universities pay a membership contribution of US$5000 annual subscription for membership. Other governance organs include a Board Executive Committee, a Deans and Principals Committee, a technical Committee, an International Advisory Panel, and national forums.

RUFORUM has 22 technical/ professional staff at its Secretariat in Kampala with significant experience in research, training and education, and knowledge Management.

RUFORUM has a MoU with the African Union to support strengthening of higher agricultural education in Africa and particularly the Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy for Africa (STISA 2024).

RUFORUM has led implementation of over seven EU projects and participated in over 15 related to higher agricultural education.

RUFORUM achievements since its inception in 2004 include support and development of 15 regional academic programs (MSc & PhD) in support of agriculture research and development in Africa and the training of 1,716 MSc and 436 PhD African students.

Activities

RUFORUM will mainly contribute to the project through WP, in particular co-leading, together with SLU, the Task 3.1 “Clustering Projects & Thematic Networks.”

People

  • Dr Solange Uwituze has 16 years of Experience in Higher Agriculture Education and is currently the Program Manager for Partnerships and business Management at the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) Secretariat where she is responsible for Knowledge Management; Communication; Marketing and Advocacy; Resource Mobilisation; and Partnerships. She previously served as the RUFORUM Program Manager for Training and Quality assurance. She also served as Dean of the University of Rwanda’s Faculty of Agriculture. She has successfully led development of multimillion US Dollar projects and has extensive experience in leadership and management of various multilateral Capacity Building projects. A graduate of Kansas State University, USA, her research area is beef cattle nutrition and to a lesser extent the dairy sector. She is a consultant of the World Bank for Higher Education and a Founding Fellow of the Rwanda Academy for Science of which she heads the Agricultural & Environmental Sciences section. Dr Uwituze is a member of the Scientific Programme Committee of Next Einstein Forum, an initiative of the African Institute of Mathematical Sciences (AIMS). She is a reviewer of several journals including the Journal of Animal Science and African Journal of Rural Development.