Research Policy and Guidelines

Policy, Objective and Priorities


Act No.6 of 1984 enacted by the Parliament of the United Republic of Tanzania to establish Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) gives the University a broad mandate "to initiate and conduct basic and applied research in the field of land use, crop and livestock production, fisheries, natural resources, and allied sciences, mechanical arts and technology, and to promote the integration of the research with training and agricultural extension services". At the inauguration of SUA in September, 1984, the Chancellor then (the late Mwalimu J.K. Nyerere), emphasized that, since SUA is intended to be directly useful to farmers in Tanzania, the main objective of the University must not be abstract research, but scientifically applied research useful for the transformation of the rural areas through answering the needs and solving the problems of Tanzania agriculture and rural life.


In various documents on the University, which include the Report of Study Team on the Sokoine University of Agriculture, October, 1984; The Mission of Sokoine University of Agriculture, April 1 1985; Manuscript Report by International Development Research Center, November 1985; A strategy and infrastructural plan to the year 2000, August 1988 and the Strategic master-plan for SUA to the year 2005 and beyond, September, 1997; reference is made to the need to have research conducted at SUA focus on solving the problems of underdevelopment and poverty eradication.

As a policy matter it is stated that SUA should establish a work plan and set of priorities taking into account manpower, funds and infrastructure. Research plans should be formulated and documented at University, Faculty and Departmental levels in an integrated manner. Further it is recommended that SUA should establish internal policy procedures for the control, monitoring and supervision of research projects.

Planning of research at the University is necessary in order to determine the programmes to fund. More importantly, the University must have a unity of purpose in its research effort. Each individual research project should contribute to the overall goals and objectives of the University's research agenda with emphasis on holistic, multidisciplinary research.

SUA formulated for the first time research policy, priority areas and guidelines in 1992. Since then there have been a number of new developments including the formulation of SUA Corporate Strategic Plan (CSP) and changes in National research policies which have necessitated revision of SUA research policy and guidelines. This revision is intended therefore to update the existing SUA research policy, priority areas and guidelines and facilitate smooth implementation of SUA's CSP in the research area. The Directorate of Research and Postgraduate Studies (DRPGS) established in 1988 will continue to be responsible for the administration, coordination and implementation of SUA research policies and guidelines in addition to managing research funds and monitoring all research activities undertaken at SUA