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Director: Professor Philip A.R. Hockey

Centre Profile

The Percy FitzPatrick Institute (Fitztitute) is one of seven DST/NRF NationalCentres of Excellence recognised by the National Research Foundation in thefield of science and technology in South Africa. This status recognises theexcellence of its contributions to Biodiversity Conservation through research,teaching, outreach and advising government and private sector bodies. This isachieved through promoting and undertaking scientific studies involving birds,and contributing to the theory and practice of maintaining biological diversityand the sustainable use of biological resources. The research programmecovers topics which contribute to the development of a knowledge basefocused on a variety of crucial questions relating to UnderstandingBiodiversity and Maintaining Biodiversity – the two core themes of theprogramme. The Fitztitute has extended the boundaries of the programmethrough collaboration with an international network of researchers frominstitutions as diverse as University of California, Berkeley, CambridgeUniversity, the University of Lund, Sweden, and the CNRS, France. TheFitztitute's postgraduate programme in Conservation Biology has trainedmore than 200 MSc students over the last 19 years - 85% of these past studentsare now following careers related to the conservation of biodiversity aroundthe world.


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