Eight projects were presented by staff and students on topics that included: The Potential of the New Sentinel 2 Satellite for Spatial and Environmental Research in Namibia, The Impacts of Fire History and Frost on Vegetation and Structure and Species Composition in a Semi-Arid Savanna Woodland. Two of the presentations were made by staff and six by students.
Dr Rolf Becker, the Dean of FNRSS, emphasised that it was a unanimous decision for the theme to be “Building Postgraduate Research Structures at the Faculty of Natural Resources and Spatial Sciences,” as this is in line with the Faculty’s objectives of strengthening its research portfolio at postgraduate level.
Dr Mary Seely, the former Director of the Desert Ecological Research Unit, Gobabeb, who also founded the Desert Research Foundation (DRFN), was the guest speaker at the event and expounded on how her decades of experience in research had taught her that critical thinking is the backbone of everything one does in a project. “It is important to know how the results of your research might be used and to disseminate these results not only to the academic community, but to a broad spectrum of potentially interested persons. Therefore, academics must think beyond the expectations,” Seely explained.
One of the highlights was a presentation by a group of Architecture students who summarised the outcomes of a study which assessed the options of transforming informal settlements into integrated, inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable neighbourhoods.