National Centre of Excellence for Computational Intelligence launched at GZU

In a notable advancement towards enhancing higher education and research in Zimbabwe, the Great Zimbabwe University (GZU) has proudly inaugurated the National Centre of Excellence for Computational Intelligence and Actuarial Science. This pioneering initiative marks a significant milestone in the university’s journey to cement its status amongst the leading institutions of higher learning within the country and beyond.

The launch event was graced by the presence of Old Mutual Zimbabwe Limited’s Chief Executive, Mr. Sam Matsekete, and GZU’s Acting Vice Chancellor, Professor Bernad Chazovachii, who together performed the ceremonial ribbon-cutting at the centre’s newly established offices.

The creation of this multidisciplinary centre comes as a collaborative effort with Old Mutual Zimbabwe Limited. It is inspired by the goal of delivering innovative solutions and advancements tailored to the insurance industry. However, its scope extends far beyond, touching upon various fields such as mathematics, artificial intelligence, computer and social sciences. This initiative not only underscores the growing synergy between academia and industry but also sets a precedent for fostering innovation within the region.

Prof. Chazovachii, acting as GZU’s Pro Vice Chancellor for Industrialisation, Business Development, and Strategic Partnerships, highlighted the strategic significance of the centre. He pointed out that an investment close to US$400,000 is earmarked for the infrastructure development of the new centre. This development is seen as a testament to the innovative collaboration and strategic partnership between the university sector and the industry aimed at mobilizing resources for infrastructural growth through research, innovative thinking, and industrialisation.

In a gesture of support and commitment towards this cause, Old Mutual and its partners have contributed an initial seed funding amount of US$20,000. Such contributions are pivotal in transforming the vision of the centre into reality, a sentiment echoed by Prof. Chazovachii as he expressed gratitude towards Old Mutual and its collaborators. He is confident that with the available human resources, including faculty and students at GZU, the centre will achieve its objectives and thrive.

Mr. Matsekete from Old Mutual Zimbabwe emphasized the critical importance of forging strong partnerships between the industry and academic institutions. He advocated that such collaborations are essential for enabling research that propels the nation forward. Further, he encouraged the industry at large to contribute both materially and financially to ensure the centre’s success and sustainability.

As the National Centre of Excellence for Computational Intelligence and Actuarial Science at GZU takes its first steps, there is a palpable sense of anticipation for its role in pioneering innovative solutions not just for Zimbabwe but for the regional sub-Saharan African landscape. This initiative is poised to benefit not only GZU but also other local and regional universities, bridging gaps and fostering advancements in critical areas of study and research.

With such endeavors, GZU is well on its way to becoming a beacon of excellence in education and research, contributing significantly towards the development and industrialisation of Zimbabwe and the broader region.

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