Image: Lahcen Daoudi, the Minister of Higher Education and Martin Rose, the Director of British Council in Morocco.

Five-year research collaboration programme

A Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the British Council and National Center for Scientific and Technical Research (CNRST). The memorandum, which was signed on 10 July 2013 under the auspices of the Moroccan Ministry of Higher Education, launched a five-year research collaboration programme.

The programme, titled Researcher Links, aims to enhance international research collaboration between ambitious young researchers from Morocco and the UK. Researcher Links has organised thematic workshops and travel grants, which have been co-funded by the British Council and CNRST. Each organisation contributed £50,000 in 2013/2014.

Interdisciplinary interaction

Researcher Links has encouraged outward and inward mobility to enable early career researchers to make contacts internationally. The initiative has included researchers in the social sciences, humanities, natural sciences, and has provided an environment for interdisciplinary interaction. Researchers from different fields have come together to focus on a common goal.

The programme uses networking tools, exchanges and funding for new research links to foster sustainable working relationships in the areas of knowledge of mutual interest for the UK and Morocco.

Comments from the Minister of Higher Education and the Director of British Council, Morocco

H.E. Lahcen Daoudi, the Minister of Higher Education, highlights the importance of this initiative: “International collaborative research has more impact and benefits for both Moroccan and British partners. Our aim is to encourage international universities to establish international research hubs in Morocco and it is a great moment for British universities to join as there is a great appetite for scientific collaboration in Morocco, and this agreement will help give it expression”.

Commenting on the importance of this project, Martin Rose, the Director of British Council Morocco explains: “It represents a major step forward in the research links between the two countries, not because there haven’t previously been such links, but because it is the first time for many years that they have been formalised in this way. It is a clear sign of the increasingly close relationship between Great Britain and Morocco in many areas - but particularly in those of language, education and research. We believe that the fostering of international research is a win-win game”.