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Enhancing Science Partnerships for Innovation and Sustainable Development


Event calendar for the month: September 2017

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Ambassador for the Year of Science

Science Network

The 2012/2013 Essay Competition

Does the universe contain answers to important questions for the world in front of our doorstep? What will the town or city of the future look like? How can modern agriculture be used to feed more people? 

These and other complex questions are keeping researchers and scientists busy all over the world. Whether we find answers to them, and if so, what those answers will be, are matters of concern for all of us. The great challenges that we humans are facing today can best be tackled together. So it’s time to get involved!

The essay competition HISTORY. WRITING. THE FUTURE. is part of the German-South African Year of Science 2012/2013. The Year’s objectives are the exchange of views, knowledge and experiences in both countries and the fostering of science and research between the two. The intention is that this should provide answers to many of the pressing questions that we humans are asking ourselves today. And your views are important, too.

What's it about?

We’d like you to write about one of the Year of Science’s seven thematic fields:

  • Astronomy
  • Bioeconomy
  • Climate Change
  • Social Sciences and Humanities
  • Urbanisation/Megacities
  • Health Innovation
  • Human Capital Development

Do you have a vision for how we can face up to the challenges of the future? Have you been thinking about issues that you would like to discuss? Are you confronted in your scientific work, or in the world right in front of your doorstep, by examples of the future-related topics that the Year of Science is attempting to tackle? Present your ideas, tell your stories and give us your point of view!

How does it work?

Your essay will have a maximum length of 6,000 characters, including spaces, and it must be written in German and submitted as a Word document. Send your essay together with a certificate of enrolment in digital format by email to:


The closing date for essays is 31 January 2013.

Who can take part?

Anyone who is enrolled at a university or equivalent in Germany can take part. It is planned that there will be a similar competition for South African students soon.