University of Cape Town (UCT) South Africa

Overview

Infographic for University of Cape Town (UCT)

Research Highlights and Innovations 2019-2020

The University of Cape Town’s (UCT) geographical vantage point at the tip of Africa offers an exhilarating research environment that combines excellence with impact.

As a leading research university, UCT is one of the best places in the world to research Africa-specific problems, from the chemistry of malarial drug discovery to the development of urban Africa. We have strong collaborative networks across the globe and often form a nexus of partnerships between researchers in the global north and global south, particularly Africa. UCT is the first university in Africa to join the International Alliance of Research Universities. It is therefore not surprising that we attract researchers — from postgraduates and postdoctoral fellows to leaders in their field — from all over the continent and the world.

Healthcare for Africa

In a country that faces four epidemics, where most countries only have one or two, UCT has developed expertise in addressing healthcare in Africa. The Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine and the Drug Discovery and Development Centre have produced ground-breaking research, particularly in the areas of HIV, TB and malaria. The Wellcome Centre for Infectious Diseases Research in Africa is the first of its kind in Africa.

Climate and development

UCT has extensive interdisciplinary expertise in conservation, climate adaptation and community conflict. The AXA Research Fund awarded its first research chair in Africa to the director of the African Climate & Development Initiative, a leading research group. The Future Water Institute builds on UCT’s substantial research footprint in water and encompasses the skills and resources of departments across six faculties. UCT also hosts two Centres of Excellence under the African Research Universities Alliance, which draw together expertise from across the continent: the African Centre of Excellence for Inequalities Research and the Centre of Excellence in Climate and Development.

Experts in the southern skies

Through its global experts in the field, such as Professor George Ellis who co-wrote The Large Scale Structure of Space-Time with Stephen Hawking, and leading role in the Square Kilometre Array, UCT is a growing hub for astronomical and astrophysics research in Africa. Professor Russ Taylor is heading up the university’s involvement in the Square Kilometre Array project and the big-data challenges it brings.

UCT’s latest research

UCT’s research magazine, Research Highlights and Innovations 2019-2020, features research stories from across the university, as does its research and innovation news site.

University of Cape Town retains sole responsibility for content © 2021 University of Cape Town.

Research

Date range: 1 July 2021 - 30 June 2022

Region: Global
Subject/journal group: All

The table to the right includes counts of all research outputs for University of Cape Town (UCT) published between 1 July 2021 - 30 June 2022 which are tracked by the Nature Index.

Hover over the donut graph to view the Share for each subject. Below, the same research outputs are grouped by subject. Click on the subject to drill-down into a list of articles organized by journal, and then by title.

Note: Articles may be assigned to more than one subject area.

Article Count and Share for University of Cape Town (UCT)
Count Share
178 18.09

Outputs by subject (Share)

Outputs by subject
Subject Count Share
93 5.03
59 4.56
9 3.64
25 5.93

Share output for the past 5 years

Share per year
2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
9.92 15.69 15.87 19.28 17.55

Compare University of Cape Town (UCT) with other institutions

Highlight of the month

Roots determine dominant biome

© Martin Harvey/The Image Bank/Getty Images

Belowground competition for scarce resources fought by plant roots plays a much bigger role than previously thought in determining boundaries between biomes.

Abiotic factors such as geology, climate and fire regimes have been thought to largely determine the dominant biome in an area.

But now, a team that included researchers from the University of Cape Town in South Africa has shown that the root strategies that plants employ to obtain nutrients from the soil can determine the biome.

In a four-yield field study, the team investigated the sharp boundaries between two very contrasting biomes: one (forest) dominated by a small number of trees and the other (Fynbos) with great plant diversity that included many shrubs. The two biomes occur in areas with identical climate and geology.

The team found that the different root strategies employed determined whether forest or Fynbos dominated.

Supported content

References

  1. PNAS 119, e2117514119 (2022). doi: 10.1073/pnas.2117514119

View the article on the Nature Index

See more research highlights from University of Cape Town (UCT)

More research highlights from University of Cape Town (UCT)

Collaboration

Date range: 1 July 2021 - 30 June 2022

International vs. domestic collaboration by Share

  • 16.59% Domestic
  • 83.41% International

Hover over the graph to view the percentage of collaboration.


Top 10 domestic collaborators with University of Cape Town (UCT) by Share (65 total)

  1. University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (Wits University) (4.97)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)2.80
    University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (Wits University)2.17
  2. University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) (4.68)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)2.25
    University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN)2.42
  3. University of Cape Town (UCT) and National Health Laboratory Service (NHLS) (3.06)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)2.02
    National Health Laboratory Service (NHLS)1.04
  4. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Kwazulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform (KRISP) (2.66)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.53
    Kwazulu-Natal Research Innovation and Sequencing Platform (KRISP)1.13
  5. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Stellenbosch University (SU) (2.53)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.53
    Stellenbosch University (SU)1.00
  6. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Africa Health Research Institute (2.31)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)0.63
    Africa Health Research Institute1.68
  7. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) (2.09)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.53
    Technology Innovation Agency (TIA)0.57
  8. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Groote Schuur Hospital (GSH) (2.01)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.70
    Groote Schuur Hospital (GSH)0.31
  9. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) (1.90)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.28
    Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA)0.62
  10. University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of Pretoria (UP) (1.96)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.02
    University of Pretoria (UP)0.94

Top 10 international collaborators with University of Cape Town (UCT) by Share (1717 total)

  1. University of Cape Town (UCT) and National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN) (4.67)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)0.16
    National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN)4.51
  2. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Harvard University (4.38)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)0.60
    Harvard University3.77
  3. University of Cape Town (UCT) and European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) (3.64)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)0.16
    European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN)3.48
  4. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Imperial College London (ICL) (3.17)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.80
    Imperial College London (ICL)1.38
  5. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Max Planck Society (3.65)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.24
    Max Planck Society2.41
  6. University of Cape Town (UCT) and French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) (3.38)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.55
    French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS)1.82
  7. University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of Cambridge (3.02)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.15
    University of Cambridge1.87
  8. University of Cape Town (UCT) and UCL (2.27)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)1.17
    UCL1.10
  9. University of Cape Town (UCT) and University of Washington (UW) (2.25)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)0.99
    University of Washington (UW)1.26
  10. University of Cape Town (UCT) and Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) (2.53)
    University of Cape Town (UCT)0.67
    Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)1.86

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