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Media Release: World scientists assemble in KNP

Date: 2012-03-05

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The Kruger National Park (KNP) will once again have an opportunity to host a myriad scientists and researchers from around the world at the 10th annual Savanna Science Network Meeting which will take place from 5-9 March 2012 at the Nombolo Mdhluli Conference Centre in Skukuza. The meeting will host 230 delegates representing 75 different institutions from 10 countries.

The programme will explore about 111 presentations covering a wide range of topics and research conducted in all Savanna National Parks and Protected Areas. “This meeting has grown from one encouraging scientific dialogue around biological research in the Kruger National Park to one now encouraging a broader social-ecological savanna focus”, commented Scientific Services Head of Department, Mr Danie Pienaar.

Many topical issues in ecological science will be covered during the week, including tourism related issues, biodiversity, land use and land use change effects, the human interface with parks, rivers, wetlands and freshwater management, climate change effects and anticipated ecosystem responses and large mammal ecosystem drivers and their mechanisms of change.

Pienaar further stated that “the Savanna Science Network Meeting provides an opportunity for scientists to share their latest findings conducted in national parks and other conservation areas within the savanna vegetation. This includes numerous research projects and longer-term study programmes within South Africa, but also drawing in relevant research and understanding from other protected areas across the globe”. It is an important forum for dialogue and debate about ecological science and conservation matters as well as a pivotal point for future research collaborations. 

Scientists from numerous South African universities, South African National Parks and a number of high profile overseas universities are scheduled to speak at the meeting. 

SANParks scientists engage and collaborate with a wide range of scientists, research partners and funders from within South Africa and the world. The networking and dialogue opportunities between academics and park authorities that the meeting facilitates, is a key to promoting insights, a pro-active evidence-based decision making and directing research into priority conservation management needs.

Issued by: 
Laura Mukwevho, Media Relations Practitioner, Kruger National Park. Contact: Tel: 013 735 4262, cell: 082 807 1441 or email:

William Mabasa, HOD: Public Relations and Communication, Kruger National Park. Contact: Tel: 013 735 4363, cell: 082 807 3919 or email:



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