National ICT Research Capacity and Priorities for Cooperation - Republic of Burundi

National Priorities

In accordance with Burundi's National STI Policy (2011) and its Implementation Action Plan 2014 - 2018, the following critical strategic sectors have been identified:

- Agro-food Technology

- Medical Science

- Energy, Mining and Transport

- Water, Environment and Desertification

- Biotechnology and Indigenous Knowledge

- Materials Science, Engineering and Industries

- ICT, Spatial Science and Mathematics

- Humanities and Social Science

National ICT Research Priorities include:

- ICT Infrastructure Development including fibre optic to provide high speed, high bandwidth connectivity at a more cost effective cost, thus supporting the increase in internet and mobile penetration in Burundi

- Application of ICT in Education - Technology-enhanced learning and capacity building is a priority both for Secondary Schools, Higher Education Institutions and TVET

- Application of ICT in Governmental Services - priority areas include: Immigration, Biometric ID, Land management (GIS) and Taxation

National Research Capacity

The following universities and research centers in Burundi are providing ICT/Engineering Courses and /or undertaking ICT-related initiatives:

Université du Burundi (Bujumbura)

- Departments include: ICT Department, Polytechnics Dept, Civil Engineering Dept

- Research areas include: Components and Systems, Advanced Computing, Technology-enhanced Learning, Health (Faculty of Medicine), Sustainable Agriculture (Faculty of Agronomy and Bioengineering)

Université Lumière de Bujumbura

- Departments include: Faculté de Communication & Faculté d'Informatique de gestion;

- Research areas include: Advanced Computing, Technology-enhanced learning

Université Espoir d'Afrique

- Departments include: Faculté des Lettres et des Sciences (Département d'informatique, option Informatique et système de gestion de l'information & Département de la Communication); Faculté d'ingénierie et de Technologie (Département d'Ingénierie en génie et gestion des télécommunications);

- Research areas include Public Health (Faculty of Medicine)

Université de Ngozi (Bujumbura)

- Departments include: Faculty of Maths - Informatique; Faculty of Medicine; Faculty of Agriculture

- Research areas include: Components and Systems, Technology-enhanced Learning, Health Sciences (Faculty of Medicine); Agriculture and Food Security


- Departments include: Informatics Engineering, Software Engineering

- Research areas include: Component and Systems, Advanced Computing, Technology-enhanced learning

Université des Grands Lacs

- Departments include: Faculté d'Informatique

Université du lac Tanganyika

- Departments include: Informatics

Université Sagesse d'Afrique

- Departments include: Informatics

Université Polytechnique de Gitega

- Departments include: Faculty of ICT

International University of Equator

- Departments include: Department of ICT

Institut Supérieur des Technologies (Bujumbura)

- Departments include: Maintenance Informatics

Institut Supérieur Professionnel du MENVC

- Département d'Informatique de maintenance

Institut Supérieur d'Enseignement Technique de Rumonge

- Département d'Informatique de Gestion et de maintenance

Grand Séminaire de Burasira (Burasira, Ngozi)

- Departments include: Management informatics

Université Martin Luther King

- Departments include: Management informatics, Logistic and Computer Maintenance

Ecole Nationale d'Administration

- Departments include: Informatics

Institut Supérieur de Développement (ISD) (Bujumbura)

- Departments include: Administration et Sécurité des Réseaux, Computer Maintenance

Institut Supérieur de gestion et d'Informatique

- Département des Technologies et de la Communication

Institut Supérieur des Techniques de gestion

- Département d'Informatique de gestion

In total there are 49 Institutions of Higher Education in Burundi with over 55,000 students enrolled.

ICT-39 Priority Themes

Based on consultation with stakeholders and the IST-Africa H2020 Training Workshop in Bujumbura in November 2014, the following thematic areas were considered to be important in the context of ICT-39: eHealth; eAgriculture; Climate action; Environment and Energy. It was noted that the focus areas under the National Policy on Scientific Research and Technological Innovation (2014) is well aligned with Societal Challenges under Horizon 2020.

Thematic Areas Partners include
eHealth University of Burundi; National Institute of Public Health; East Africa Community (EAC) Centre of Excellence in Public Health Training; Université de Ngozi; Université Espoir d'Afrique
eAgriculture University of Burundi; Université de Ngozi; National Center for Food Technology (CNTA); Institute of Agronomic Sciences (ISABU)
Energy University of Burundi; REGIDESO; ONATOUR

Mapping to H2020 Themes

Horizon 2020 Industrial Leadership Institution, Relevant Dept.
Components and Systems University of Burundi (ICT Department, Polytechnics Dept, Civil Engineering Dept); Université Lumière de Bujumbura (Informatics, Civil Engineering Dept); INITELEMATIQUE (informatics Dept); Université de Ngozi (Informatics Dept)
Advanced Computing University of Burundi (ICT Department, Polytechnics Dept, Civil Engineering Dept); Université Lumière de Bujumbura (Informatics Dept); Université de Ngozi (Informatics Dept)
Future Internet Executive Secretariat for ICT (SETIC)
Content Technologies & Information Management Executive Secretariat for ICT (SETIC); University of Burundi (ICT Department, Polytechnics Dept, Civil Engineering Dept); Université de Ngozi (Informatics Dept); Université Lumière de Bujumbura (Informatics Dept, Civil Engineering Dept); INITELEMATIQUE (Informatics Dept)

Horizon 2020 Societal Challenges Institution, Relevant Dept and Research area
Health University of Burundi, Faculty of Medicine: Malaria, HIV SIDA, Neglected tropical diseases, Telemedicine application; Faculty of Sciences : Phytochemicals & Traditional medicine; National Institute of Public Health (INSP): Malaria, HIV SIDA, Neglected tropical diseases; East Africa Community (EAC) Centre of Excellence in Public Health Training; Université de Ngozi, Health Science Institute/Faculty : Malaria, HIV SIDA, Neglected tropical diseases; Université Espoir d'Afrique, Faculty of Medicine: Public health
Food Security, Sustainable Agriculture University of Burundi, (Faculty of Agronomy and BioEngineering) : edible fungi, improvement of rice production, tissue culture; IRRI-ESA: International Rice Research Institute for Eastern, Southern and Central Africa ; National Center for Food Technology (CNTA) (Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock) - Research and development of food technology and the transfer and dissemination of these technologies to small enterprises.; Institute of Agronomic Sciences (ISABU) (Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock) - focus on maize, rice, cassava, potatoes, livestock etc.; Université de Ngozi, CERADER : Vegetable seeds multiplying; AGROBIOTECH : banana tissue culture
Energy REGIDESO (water and hydropower supply); ONATOUR (Peat Supply); University of Burundi (Renewable Energy)

Level of Research Maturity

Burundi is slowly building up the institutions and infrastructure following twelve years of crisis up to 2005. The general level of research maturity in Burundi is limited, primarily due to lack of international exposure, developing infrastructure and limited donor engagement. IST-Africa has assisted greatly in this regard, by providing necessary resources, facilitating exchange of experiences with both Europe and Africa, focusing international attention on Information Society and ICT related challenges and opportunities in Burundi and providing opportunities to engage with research stakeholders internationally. Complementary activities include the launch of an optical fibre project, plans to invest in infrastructure and computers in the Higher Education system, a policy for free charges when importing ICT equipment and the development of partners in ICT Networking (such as participation in the IST-Africa Initiative).

One of the key challenges is the small number of institutions actively engaging in multidisciplinary research. While the current primary focus is on technology adoption and developing applications, there is a strong policy focus on strengthening research capacity within the country, and especially in facilitating the continued development of post-graduate programmes and involvement in cross-border research. The recent establishment of the National Research and Education Network (BERNET) is very positive. There is now a much higher level of awareness of pan-African and international ideas of what level of research maturity is required and a greater focus on the development of research results with the potential to achieve sustainable socio-economic impact.

Up to September 2018, Burundi is involved in 2 Horizon 2020 projects with research funding of over €60,000 across a range of thematic areas:

Ø SOCIETY, H2020-INT-INCO-2014 - RINEA (CSA - Coordination & support action) - Ministere De L'Enseignement Superiet de la Recherche Scientifique

Ø H2020-ICT-2016-INT - IST-Africa 2016-2018 (CSA - Coordination & support action) - Ministere De L'Enseignement Superiet de la Recherche Scientifique