PRDF 2020


The AAUN PRDF Program is an annual competitive seed funding that builds teams to address mutual Australian African research challenges in environment, food and nutrition security, or in related aspects of higher education and economic development. We are awarding eight catalyst seed grants as shown in the list below.

Name of Project Principal Investigator(s) AAUN Partners Non-AAUN Partners Objectives & Outcomes
Plasma activated water for fresh fish in Africa
Dr Kirsty Bayliss, Murdoch University
Dr Peter Johnston, University of Cape Town; Dr Carel Oosthuizen, University of Pretoria
Dr Ben Roeenfeldt, Fisheries Specialist
To investigate the application of plasma ice to fresh fish, for preservation and shipping. This is important for local market access and increased export opportunities.
Women Early Career Researchers (WECRs) in Food Systems in Africa: Research Training and Capacity Building
Professor Prem Ramburuth, University of New South Wales (UNSW)
Dr Melody Mentz-Coetzee, University of Pretoria
Selection of African universities to be involved; Gulu University and its Faculty of Agriculture and Environment;ARUA (African Research Universities Alliance)
Investigate the extent to which Women Early Career Researchers in Africa are engaged in research across the multiple interactions in the area of Food Systems.
Performance Measurement for Social Scientists in Agriculture: Theory and Practice
Dr Amin Mugera, University of Western Australia
Prof John Mburu, University of Nairobi, Kenya
The UWA Institute of Agriculture; The UWA African Research and Engagement Center; The UWA Public Policy Institute
To develop the capacity of Early Career Researchers in sub-Saharan Africa to conduct empirical research and produce evidence-based policies to address the challenges facing agriculture.
Keeping iodine on the food policy agenda in the era of salt reduction strategies: A case study from South Africa
Professor Karen Charlton, University of Wollongong
Dr Beulah Pretorius, University of Pretoria
Ms Phumeza Mkontwana, Nelson Mandela University; Dr Lizelle Zandberg, North West University
The study findings will inform iodine fortification strategies and provide direction for other countries following South Africa’s lead in salt reduction to ensure that the two public health policies are complimentary.
Transitioning females to a sustainable future through STEM training and research
Professor Tim Roberts, University of NewCastle
Professor Madara Ogot, University of Nairobi
Professor Charles Omwandho,  Kirinyaga University, Kenya
To assist KyU to develop its research culture and staff training in research; and to grow the  interest of school girls in particular in  STEM subjects with a view to increasing enrolments in STEM curricula at tertiary level, to progress into the desperately needed STEM workforce.
Securing Water Supplies – Participatory Groundwater Monitoring and Management in Botswana and Uganda
Prof Basant Maheshwari, Western Sydney University

Dr Dharma Hagare               & Assoc Prof Maria      Varua, Western           Sydney University;            Prof Elly Sabiiti &           Assoc Prof Basamba     Twaha Ateenyi,       Makerere University;

Professor Piet Kenabatho &  Dr Ditiro Moalafhi, University of Botswana
Queensland University of Technology: Professor Ashantha Goonetilleke
Sustainable groundwater management is critical for agriculture, drinking water supplies and improved livelihoods in Africa. The proposal focuses on piloting village level participatory approaches to improve groundwater supplies and reducing demand through engagement of farmers and other stakeholders.
Building an African- Australian Alliance to Address Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
Prof Angela Dawson, University of Technology Sydney
Dr Carolyne Njue,

University of Technology Sydney;

Prof Patrick Muia Ndavi & Dr Samuel Kimani & Dr Tammery Esho, University of Nairobi;

Dr Blessing Akombi, UNSW
Dr Ngatho Mugo, the University of Sydney;  NSW Health;
African Australian Public Health Academic Network; Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health
To establish links with researchers and professionals in Africa and relevant counterparts in Australia to exchange, implement and adapt good practice, communicate appropriate messages and share mutual learning to prevent FGM and better care for affected women and girls.
Nutrient density and protein quality of African processed meat products
Prof Hettie Schonfeldt (Co-PI), University of Pretoria;

Dr Mieghan Bruce (Co-PI), Murdoch University

Dr Beulah Pretorius, University of Pretoria;

Dr Oluwatosin Leshi, University of Ibadan
Prof Henriette Eneobong, AFROODS Co-ordinatior, University of Calabar, Nigeria; South African Meat Processors Association
To investigate the nutrient density and nutritional value of processed meat products comparing to other substitute products high in protein.