Page 42 - 2012-01-20

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While the influence of science in seeding new technologies is evident, it shapes the world in other
ways. It is a powerful unifying force for humanity, cutting across cultures, languages, and religious
differences in ways which few other human activities can.
Perimeter’s Global Outreach initiative seeks to promote scientific talent and the emergence of
centres of scientific excellence in the developing world. By sharing knowledge and expertise, and
cultivating collaborative relationships, the Institute is working to build research capacity around
the world and also to strengthen Canadian research by drawing talented researchers here.
The first focus is on Africa: Perimeter is proud to partner with the African Institute for Mathematical
Sciences (AIMS). Founded in 2003 by Perimeter Institute Director Neil Turok, AIMS is a globally
recognized centre of excellence for graduate education and research based in Cape Town, South
Africa. AIMS’ mission is to rapidly and cost-effectively expand Africa’s scientific and technological
capacity by providing advanced training to exceptional graduates. Outstanding lecturers from
around the world train students to become independent thinkers with the advanced skills needed
in many sectors.
Since 2003, AIMS has graduated over 360 students – more than a third of them women – who
are already making a substantial difference to the development of science across the continent.
With plans for 15 centres across Africa by 2021, the AIMS-Next Einstein Initiative (AIMS-NEI) is
developing a new generation of outstanding African problem-solvers who will become leaders
across a range of key sectors, including medicine, energy, business, and technology.
Esra Khaleel, an AIMS graduate, is currently finishing a graduate degree in
nuclear physics at Stellenbosch University in South Africa.
“Just think what will happen if Africa does for science what it has
done for music, for literature, and for art. Not only Africa, but the
world could be transformed.”
– Neil Turok, Perimeter Institute Director and AIMS Founder
Photo credit: Erin Conway-Smith