Sokoine University of Agriculture conduct various research activities that aim at contributing to the national, regional and global developmental agenda in areas of agriculture, forestry, natural resources, animal and public health, nutrition and environment.
Our research agenda responds to the contemporary and emerging needs of agriculture, natural resources and allied sectors.
We have strong collaborative research linkages with various stakeholders and researchers within Tanzania, African region and international communities.
Our Research policy priorities are focused on finding sustainable solutions and advancing knowledge to address National, African Regional and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) related to food security and agriculture, forestry, natural resource management, animal and public health, agribusiness, market and entrepreneurship, education and information technology.
SUA’s main research objective is to provide leadership in basic and applied research in order to generate scientific knowledge, technologies and innovations that respond to contemporary and emerging needs.
SUA thus emphasizes research that is linked to development and societal issues. Research, outreach and consultancy services are driven by trained agricultural and natural resource manpower base that comprises 529 academic staff, out whom 58% have PhD qualifications. Research capacity at SUA is further enhanced through collaborative research projects, which are supported by more than 50 memoranda of understanding. Currently, there are over 100 ongoing research projects in various fields. The memoranda of understanding have facilitated collaboration between SUA researchers and those from universities in other countries and international organizations, and have made SUA a fertile ground for intellectual stimulation due to the many collaborative activities going on.
SUA has benefitted from several institutional support initiatives supported by various donors. This includes: iAGRI; Prepare PhD and PREPARE- BSc.
iAGRI is a USAID-funded project that began in 2011 and will run up to February, 2017 for the purpose of building a sustainable food system through training, research, outreach and institutional transformation that encompasses private and public sectors. The main project partners are the Ministry of Agriculture and Sokoine University of Agriculture. The objectives of iAGRI are: i) Training: scholarships for 135 Tanzanian post-graduate students (115 at M.S. level, 20 at Ph.D. level), 50% female, 50% male. Also short-term training on technical and leadership topics; ii) Research: collaborative agricultural and nutrition research involving SUA, Ministry of Agriculture and Ohio State University Consortium scientists; and iii) Organizational transformation: strengthen academic and administrative capacity of SUA to develop and implement agricultural and nutrition instruction, research, and outreach programs; and iv) External linkages: strengthening linkages between SUA, U.S. universities and Global South universities.
b) Promoting Excellence in Ph.D. Research Programmes in East Africa (PREPARE-PhD) Partners
PREPARE-PhD project was a three-year (2008-2011) project funded by the European Union under the ACP-EU Cooperation Programme in Higher Education (EDULINK). The PREPARE-PhD project was a collaborative research project and the partner institutions included Faculty of Life Sciences, University of Copenhagen (Denmark), Sokoine University of Agriculture (Tanzania), Makerere University (Uganda) and University of Nairobi (Kenya). The overall objective of the project was to develop competent relevant high level human resources within agriculture, veterinary science, human nutrition, natural resource management and related fields to address socio-economic development needs of societies in East Africa. Specifically the project aimed at creating efficient and effective PhD training systems through strengthening local research capacity and regional networking in the participating higher education institutions. The main activities were updating rules and regulations for PhD programmes and harmonize them among the East African Universities, upgrading administrative system for smooth administration of PhD programmes and developing Ph.D. Student progress tracking system, training lecturers/professors on good supervision and examination, developing PhD courses on Proposal Writing and Research Methodology, Scientific Writing and Information Competence and Management, Statistics and Computer Applications in Research and Data analysis, training Ph.D. students on research proposal development and scientific writing skills and facilitating establishment of Ph.D. Student Associations.
c) Enhancing the Quality of Graduates of Agriculture to meet tomorrow's food security challenges (PREPARE- BSC)
PREPARE-BSC project is a three-year (2014-2017) project funded by the European Union under the ACP-EU Cooperation Programme in Higher Education (EDULINK). The PREPARE-BSC project is a collaborative research project and the partner institutions include University of Nairobi (Kenya), Sokoine University of Agriculture (Tanzania), Makerere University (Uganda) and Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen (Denmark). The overall objective is to enable the Universities to develop competent relevant high level human resources within agriculture, veterinary science and related fields to address food security as part of socio-economic development needs of the societies in Eastern Africa. The specific objective is to improve undergraduate programmes in the East African region in order to enhance graduate suitability for the job market. The main activities are assessment of attitude of secondary school students, teachers and parents towards agricultural career, assessment of university staff and students’ perceptions on agricultural training, assessment of employers’ attitude on agricultural training and graduates, reviewing curricula for undergraduate programmes using inputs from employers and pre-university students, training of lecturers in didactics and pedagogy and student mentorship, establishing linkages between universities and industry players, and building interest of pre-university students on learning agriculture.