|Happy times: Staff and students celebrate the launch of the Plant Conservation Unit.|
The Institute for Plant Conservation (IPC) in the botany department has been renamed as the Plant Conservation Unit “to bring us in line with the university's vision”.
According to Professor Timm Hoffman, head of the unit, the decision had followed a review, discussions with the board, dean and the head of department. Given the staff complement, financial resources and vision, it was felt that the unit concept was fitting.
Hoffman said the IPC contributed "significantly" to training conservationists and now intends being a world-class unit.
With emphasis on research, education and social responsiveness, Hoffman added that the unit will focus on land use, land degradation and sustainable development in projects like monitoring the ecology of rural Namaqualand; restoration ecology in which 18 jobs are set to be created by the Namaqualand Restoration Initiative; and the biodiversity, conservation and management programme, which focuses on indigenous plant use.
There was also a photo celebration when the unit was launched on 9 November.
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