IEEE Sales and Marketing, in cooperation with it’s local organizational unit in South Africa, the IEEE South Africa Section, hosted an event on 4 June 2009 that led to the establishment of a new academic consortium in Southern Africa. The consortium partners are (not in any particular order): The University of Johannesburg, University of Pretoria, University of the Witwatersrand, Stellenbosch University, University of Cape Town, Tshwane University of Technology, North-West University, University of South Africa (UNISA), University of Botswana, and the Polytechnic of Namibia. The partners now have access to IEEE’s largest online collection, IEL (http://www.ieee.org/iel). The partners gain access to the collection via the IEEE Xplore interface, IEEE’s digital library. Most recently, a mobile interface (http://m.ieeexplore.ieee.org) to IEEE Xplore has also been introduced.
The event, attended by researchers (academic personnel), IEEE volunteers, professors, librarians and IEEE staff, was held to discuss the value of subscribing to the IEL collection for universities in Southern Africa. The new consortium will benefit the ten universities currently served and make it possible for more universities to join at a reduced subscription rate going forward. View-points of South African lead academics, including Prof. R.F. Sandenbergh, Dean: Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology, Uni. of Pretoria and Prof. F.W. Leuschner, Head of Dept.: Electrical, Electronic & Computer Eng., Uni. of Pretoria served to strongly support the consortium approach; Prof. Leuschner reminded the audience of the contribution of research and research articles towards research related subsidies (associated to publishing in accredited journal articles) in South Africa.
IEEE recognizes IEEE South Africa Section Chair, Dr Saurabh Sinha, the University of Pretoria, EBSCO Publishing and South African National Library and information Consortium (SANLiC), for promoting this effort.
* Contact: Judy Brady, IEEE Sales and Marketing, E-mail: J.Brady@ieee.org