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Who is eligible?

The DSI-NRF Centre of Excellence in Mathematical and Statistical Sciences (CoE-MaSS) receives funding from the national Department of Science and Innovation (DSI), which is administered by the National Research Foundation (NRF) and the Host Institution, Wits University.  This research funding is administered across the 16 partner institutions that make up the CoE-MaSS.

Research Funding Grants

No ad hoc awards will be made in 2020, until further notice, as the Centre has already committed all of its available research grant funding (through each of the 12 x Focus Area Research Plans; submitted in Sept 2019) for the 2020 calendar year to numerous events around the country. Please check back here at a later stage for any changes to this. Thank you.

Postgrad Bursaries and Postdoc Fellowships 2020

Awards for Bursaries and Fellowships have already been allocated for the 2020 calendar year. The outcome of the application process was communicated with the successful applicants in December 2019. Whilst we would like to fund many more students and fellows, we have limited resources to do so. As such, no additional awards will be made in 2020.

Postgrad Bursaries and Postdoc Fellowships 2021

Please note that the NRF Bursary application process will be changing this year for funding from 2021 and beyond. Applications for CoE-MaSS funding will be made directly to the NRF by 14 August 2020, for 2021 funding.

What do we fund?

The Centre reports to the NRF on 5 main Key Performance Areas (KPAs), namely:

  • Research (incl. publications, writing retreats to train emerging researchers to develop publications, mini-sabbaticals, research collaborations, etc.)
  • Education and Training (incl. short course training, MaSS staff capacity development, etc.)
  • Service rendering (incl. community engagement activities, academic citizenship in MaSS, etc.)
  • Information brokerage (incl. science communication, technical reports for industry partners, etc.)
  • Networking

As such, applications for funding must cover requests for funding in one or more of these areas. The Centre also highlights that research outputs arising, as well as co-funding obtained from other sources are also key factors that are considered in determining funding success.

We are currently funding Postgraduate Bursaries, Post-Doctoral Fellowships, Focus Area research projects and activities, accredited and non-accredited Short Courses, Workshops and other Training events, Writing Retreats, MaSS Capacity Development, etc. provided that the activities fall within one of the CoE-MaSS Focus Areas.

Organisers of events are reminded that the CoE-MaSS is funded by South African taxpayer funds and we have a mandate to focus on developing South African citizens and permanents residents working in the MaSS fields in the first instance. As such, the Centre will funds all nationalities at our events but with the following proviso:

  • Keynotes/plenaries: At least 50% of CoE-MaSS-funded invited plenaries/keynotes at an event must be South African citizens or permanent residents, as it is important that we develop senior keynote/plenary capacity in this area within the country. Should an event have an excess of this ratio of international keynotes in attendance, the balance of international delegates outside of the 50:50 ratio would need to be funded from alternative funding sources, unless a special arrangement is made at the time of funding application for where there are extenuating circumstances (e.g. the keynotes at a conference are mandated/constituted to be international, but they would be willing to stay on before/after the conference to support South African MaSS researchers with additional activities, such as workshops/training events/mentoring/etc.).
  • Postgrad student/Postdoctoral fellow attendance: At least 75% of all CoE-MaSS-funded postgrads/postdocs must be South African citizens or permanent residents. Should an event have an excess of international postgrads/postdocs in attendance over and above this 3:1-minimum ratio, the balance of these international delegates would need to be funded from alternative funding streams. It would be the responsibility of the Local Organising Committee / delegates to source alternative funds.

Are there any specific funding exclusions?

As of October 2017, the Centre no longer funds any Outgoing Conference Attendance from CoE-MaSS funds on an ad hoc basis. CoE-MaSS members are encouraged to take advantage of the NRF KIC Travel Grant Funding Call or the NRF Conference Fund Call for any outgoing conference travel outside of South Africa.

Going forward, the Centre will only fund Incoming Conference Attendance for national/international keynote/plenary speakers that are presenting at academic/research events in South Africa but these applications should normally be included in the Focus Area’s Annual Research Plan. This is in line with the Centre’s mandate to develop human capacity locally, using the limited travel funding resources that are available to the Centre.

Per diem stipends are not funded by the Centre as we have no way of confirming that these funds were in fact spent on research-related expenses.

How do I cite support received from the Centre?

If you have already been successfully funded by the Centre, please find the policy on how to cite funding support by the CoE-MaSS on your publications and other outputs here.