The Southern African Botanical Diversity Network

southern-african-botany

The Southern African Botanical Diversity Network – SABONET – is a GEF Project aimed at developing botany in southern Africa. The network connected and developed southern African herbaria, botanic gardens, botanists and other plant specialists through workshops, courses, and funding. SABONET also published a newsletter, SABONET News, and books in the SABONET Report Series with information on southern African plant biodiversity and rare and threatened plants, including checklists of the plants of Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

SABONET started in 1996 and came to a close at the beginning of 2005. This website is an archive of the project’s achievements, and includes information on the people who made it work, the countries and institutions who formed part of the network, as well as downloadable versions of the many books and newsletters that were published during the lifespan of the project.

SABONET – the Southern African Botanical Diversity Network – was started in 1996 and ended officially in June 2004. SABONET’s primary objective was building a strong core of professional botanists, taxonomists, horticulturists, and plant diversity specialists within the ten countries of southern Africa. The ten southern African countries that participated in the SABONET Project were Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

From March 1996 to date, SABONET has:
Published 39 volumes in the SABONET Report Series
Published 24 issues of SABONET News, the network’s newsletter
Sponsored the training of 26 studentsat least one from each participating country, 13 male and 13 femaleto obtain a total of 36 degrees (14 BSc Hons, 1 BTech and 21 MSc degrees)
Organised and participated in two regional expeditionsone to the Nyika Plateau and the other to southern Mozambique
Funded
numerous national collecting trips within each of the ten countries
Computerised approximately 450,000 of the specimens housed in the participating herbaria and institutions in the ten countries
Conducted many workshops and training courses
Participated in several international workshops and conferences

SABONET also instituted a very successful internship programme that further encouraged co-operation amongst the ten participating countries and contributed to the continuing education of staff associated with the participating institutions. Click here for more information on SABONET’s involvement in botanical and capacity building activities.

To build southern Africa’s botanical capacity, SABONET provided support to postgraduate students who showed commitment to the Project’s goals and objectives. A total of 26 students (at least one from each participating country, 13 male and 13 female) received scholarships and obtained 36 degrees (14 BSc Hons, 1 BTech, and 21 MSc degrees).