3 December 2012

Raymond Siebrits: A “Green Talent” Competition Winner

Raymond Siebrits, Deputy Head Boy in 2004, has been awarded a prestigious “Green Talent” award for his outstanding achievements in the area of sustainability. A leader in water research sustainability, Raymond is helping define the priorities and strategies for future research in South Africa.

The fourth Green Talents Competition organised by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, attracted over 400 applications from 69 countries this year. This annual competition is addressed to young scientists who work in the field of sustainability research. In the end, the jury selected 25 winners from 20 different countries, from Brazil to Zimbabwe, for their outstanding achievements in the area of sustainability.

Building on the new insights and contacts gained from the Germany tour, each of this year’s winners will have the opportunity to return to Germany in 2013 for a research stay funded by the BMBF. Up to three months in duration, these research stays will lay the groundwork for future international collaboration in sustainability research.

Raymond is currently enrolled in the Master’s programme “Environmental and Geographical Science” at UCT. His Master’s thesis entitled ‘An analysis of water research in South Africa: knowledge and adaptive capacity’, recently attracted the interest of the South Africa’s Water Research Commission, which is now funding a team of researchers to further develop Raymond’s work.

“The award is both a privilege and an opportunity. I could not believe that I was selected at first and had to double check what I had stated in my application! I personally see this as a strong vote of confidence in the research I am trying to pursue and am determined to use this opportunity to ultimately contribute to research in South Africa.”

“We want to enable sustainable research and growth in the water research environment to promote greater innovation, better problem-solving and improved policy,” says Raymond. “I feel this lies at the very core of sustainable development.”