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Curiosity 14: #Wits100

Curiosity, October 2022: In this special issue to mark Wits University’s centenary year, we look back over a 100 years during which our researchers have undoubtedly changed the world for good. We also look to the next 100 years and to a new generation of early career researchers in Africa who are taking on a myriad of complex planetary problems, including global change and inequality, erratic energy supply, the lack of governance and ethics, the threat of communicable and non-communicable diseases and pandemics, and the yet unknown challenges in the new century. #WitsForGood

In this issue:

  • Meet the science superheroes whose research has saved countless lives (page 10): Five Wits scientists weigh in on the University’s proud legacy of public health activism and why standing up for social justice in an unequal world remains their fight.
  • Mapping African genetic diversity for better health (page 14): The contribution of the Sydney Brenner Institute for Molecular Bioscience to the field of human genomics is rewriting history on the African continent.
  • Thirty years of the lab in the bush (page 18): Agincourt in Mpumalanga is one of the longest-running research centres of its kind in sub-Saharan Africa with sophisticated infrastructure to track and understand health and wellbeing over the life course.
  • Wits Digital Dome to light up the sky (page 32): It is the end of an era for the Wits Planetarium, although reimagining it as a Digital Dome promises to be literally out of this world.
  • Facing climate change head-on (page 34): Climate change took nearly a century to become mainstream science. Wits is taking the lead in facing up to the challenge.