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Research Funding

Multi/Inter/Trans (MIT) Disciplinary Seed Fund for Academic Staff

This internal research seed fund for academic staff was developed to promote collaborative research projects across different disciplines within the university and with researchers from other universities/research performing organisations. This seed fund covers large projects over three years and small projects over one year.

2021 Awarded MIT Projects:

Principal Investigator: Dr Edwin de Klerk

Project Title: Professional development for teacher leaders: Towards Transformative learning strategies for schools

Co-investigators: Ms Natalie Smith and Mr Habasisa Molise

Research investigator: Prof Victor Teise

Project Title: The culture, history, and language of the Korana people of southern Africa, with special reference to the Links Korana grouping

Co-investigators: Dr Marga Stander, Dr Cobus Rademeyer, Dr Cornelis Miller

Principal Investigator: Prof Nhamo Chaukura

Project Title: Novel and Innovative technologies integrated with conventional methods for wastewater treatment in Northern cape

Co-investigators: Mr Abel Hunt, Dr Jeremia Sefadi, Dr Stephen Sikwila and Dr Tendai Musvuugwa

Principal Investigator: Dr Emma Barnett

Project Title: Investigating transformative predagogical practices amongst Natural Science pre-service teachers in the School of Education.

Co-investigators: Wiets Botes

Principal investigator: Dr Jacob Mati

Project Title:  Philanthropy and social protection in pandemic times in Kenya and South Africa

Co-investigators: Prof Godfrey Maringira, Dr Crispen Chinguno and Mr Nyawo Gumede, external collaborator, Prof Mbhenkosi Moyo.

Principal Investigator: Dr Albert Whata

Project Title: A battery-less sensing dynamic hand gesture recognition system using convolutional neural networks

Co-investigators: Mr Kudakwashe Madzima and Ms Nontokozo Mpofu

Principal Investigator: Dr Ibidun Obagbuwa

Project Title: Advances of deep learning in computer vison, OpenCV and Bioinformatics.

Co-investigators: Dr Albert Whata and Mr Kudakwashe Madzima Principal Investigator: Dr Thomas Masvosve 

Project Title: The Language-Technology interface: Are the regional languages ready? A case of the Northern Cape 

Co-investigators: Dr Jabulani Sibanda, Dr Lucy Sibanda and Ms Theressa Zengeya

Principal Investigator: Dr Jabulani Sibanda

Project Title: The Nexus between linguistic and semiotic

representation, visualisation, and connection making in mathematics. Co-investigators: Dr Clemence Chikiwa, Dr Thomas Masvosve and Dr Sihlobosenkosi Mpofu

Principal Investigator: Dr Kagisho Shadung

Project Title: Phylogenetic variation in the allelopathic effect of selected species of Asteraceae on selected agricultural crop

Co-investiogators: Mr L Magoswana and Ms K Phungula

Principal Investigator:

Project Title: Everyday Networks of Political Mobilisation, Loyalty, and Patron

Understanding Youth Urban Market Politics in Zimbabwe.

Co-investigators: Godfrey Maringira, Edmore Chitukutuku, Crispen Chinguno, Ayanda  Similane and Rosette Sifa Vuninga                                                                                           

Through the Policy on Incentivisation, SPU offers its researchers non-competitive research funds such as:

  1. Conference Attendance Support Grant
  2. Publication Support Grant for Emerging and Early Career Academics
  3. Supervisor Support Grant for Master’s and Doctoral Student Throughput
  4. DHET Approved Research Output Grant
  5. Academic Staff Support Grant for Achievement of a Higher Qualification

The external research grants represent the number of staff members who successfully managed to source funding from various funding instruments and institutions to kick-start and strengthen their fundamental research career at SPU. These sources of funding enable SPU researchers to establish themselves in their fields of research while forging sustainable collaborations and partnerships with industry or other researchers from elsewhere. SPU researchers work with various funders such as the NRF, WRC, DSI, CSIR, IDRC and many others.

National Research Foundation (NRF)

The NRF is an independent statutory body established through the National Research Foundation Act (Act No 23 of 1998). The NRF funds research, the development of high-end Human Capacity and critical research infrastructure to promote knowledge production across all disciplinary fields. The goal of the NRF is to create innovative funding instruments, advance research career development, increase public science engagement and to establish leading-edge research platforms that will transform the scientific landscape and inspire a representative research community to aspire to global competitiveness. The Research Office at Sol Plaatje University houses two Designated Authority (DA) roles for all NRF grants. For more information on available funding from the NRF kindly consult the NRF website or NRF General Application Guide.

Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) – University Capacity Development Programme (UCDP)

The UCDP is intended to enable an integrated approach to capacity development across three focus areas, namely student development: staff development and programme/curriculum development. The UCDP is meant to be transformative, it must work to disrupt and transform apartheid era student and staff participation and success patterns at universities. As well as contribute to the development of universities as institutions that reflect and nurture South African and African identity and diversity The implementation of the UCDP can be enabled through the University Capacity Development Grant (UCDG) allocation to universities. SPU participates in the various sub-programmes funded through the UCDP.

Sub-Programme 1: University Capacity Development Grant (UCDG)

Research capacity development for academics is undertaken through 4 of the 9 approved projects under UCDG.

Sub-Programme 2: University-led Collaborative Projects

Sub-Programme 3: Nationally led Programmes

SPU participates in the nGAP, USDP, FPP, HELMP and EDHE programmes


Research Professional offers an intuitive interface to make browsing for research funding simple. Whether you need funds to conduct a clinical trial or a small travel grant to attend a conference, a large competitive programme from a government funder or a prize from a niche foundation, Research Professional can help you locate the funding opportunities that interest you. The platform provides following services to academics:

Funding opportunities covering all disciplines

Automatically create funding alerts for your users based on their research activity

Search thousands of upcoming conferences and special journals seeking submissions the built-in Conferences & Papers database

Research Professional provides researchers and administrators with insights to help them increase success rates and make more informed decisions about whether they should apply to specific grants or funder calls:

News Service: provides up-to-date news and independent analysis on developments in the research policy landscape, making sure academics are informed and can plan accordingly.

Mr George Moloi

Senior Administrator

Academic Building: Room 126

Email address:

Tel: 053 491 0230 

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