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A wax figure of Charles Darwin, whose theories about species have influenced science for centuries. Jose Manuel Ribeiro/Reuters

The long struggle to understand species: from pre-Darwin to the present day

Humans have an innate interest and ability in naming biologically meaningful entities, or species. Taxonomy, then, vies for the title of world's “oldest profession”.
The apartheid government built universities for black students far from major cities or safe routes. Shutterstock

How the legacy of apartheid design is making students’ lives unsafe

The system of apartheid is long gone. But its legacy of poor funding for historically black universities - and of planning that banished black universities to cities' margins - remains.
Understanding the pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis has won a South African molecular biologist international recognition. Shutterstock

Is South Africa’s research prowess sustainable?

Funding for South African higher education is inadequate considering past inequalities. Even more alarming is the fact that plans for research development and innovation in science remain elusive.
A Springbok fan cheers before the Rugby World Cup quarter-final match between South Africa and Australia at the Wellington Regional Stadium in 2011. Reuters/Mike Hutchings

A view on the Rugby World Cup and South African national unity

When South Africa won the Rugby World Cup in 1995 the country felt invincible and united. Twenty years later it is going through a tumultuous time which is even affecting its attitude to the Springboks.

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