Institute for African Renaissance Studies (IARS)

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The Institute for African Renaissance Studies (IARS) represents a shared vision for the renewal of Africa. This has been defined as the furtherance of Pan-Africanism within the global context. It entails re-establishing progressive, traditional African values and achieving a shift in consciousness to embrace individual responsibility to the community and the notion that individuals, in community with others, are in charge of their own destiny. Through the initiative of the Centre, the South African Department of Education has endorsed African Renaissance studies as a legitimate field of study.

In order to give expression to African Renaissance studies in an academic context, the IARS was established at Unisa in June 2003 as a multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary graduate academic institution. The university’s new strategic mission is to position itself as the leading university in Africa, and believes in the importance of giving intellectual leadership to the African Renaissance through the Institute. In particular, the IARS pursues the objectives that the university has set for itself to promote cutting-edge research, to increase capacity and productivity aligned with national priorities for knowledge development and to utilise its resources and capacities in community development initiatives and collaborative partnerships.

The research and teaching objectives of the Institute, focused as they are on African Renaissance, are well aligned with the desire for people to help themselves through the practical application of knowledge and resources to improve their quality of life and that of future generations.

Community Engagement