Vision and mission

Our vision

Advancing rangeland ecology and pasture management in Africa.

Our mission

Advancing ecology and management of African rangelands and pastures in a changing world by:

  • Publishing relevant high-quality research
  • Providing a dynamic and professional annual congress at which scientifically rigorous papers are presented
  • Facilitating the translation of science into policy and practice
  • Developing human capacity to study and manage rangelands and pastures
  • Providing a forum for trans-disciplinary debate, particularly between fields of production systems, biodiversity and ecosystem goods and services
  • Assisting decision makers to understand the links between ecosystem services, global change, sustainability and human wellbeing

Our objectives

Like any business, the GSSA needs to be guided by a clear vision and measurable goals. In order for the GSSA to remain relevant to its members and true to its core values, the Society regularly embarks on strategic planning processes to measure the achievement and relevance of the strategic objectives. The current strategic objectives include the following:

  • To run successful Congresses and other satellite functions
  • To publish good quality research
  • To revitalize planted pasture science within the Society
  • To support the Professional Affairs Committee
  • To increase capacity building
  • Growing the Society
  • To continuously improve the Grassroots/Bulletin
  • To maintain administrative excellence

Our history

In 1965 a small committee, comprised of Prof John D Scott, Dr Pieter de V Booysen and Dr Trevor D Steinke, with Mr John Lintner as a co-opted member, was asked to investigate the matter and, if possible, convene a meeting of those interested in the formation of a Grassland Society.

The first meeting was held at the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, in February 1966 and was attended by 96 delegates. At this meeting a number of papers were read by invitation and a draft constitution for the Society was discussed. The Congress has been held each year since 1966 in either January or July, sometimes in collaboration with other societies and organisations. 

Until 1983, a full proceeding of each Congress was published. Thereafter saw the birth of the Journal of the Grassland Society of Southern Africa which was published quarterly until 1993 when it was reduced to three issues per year. The Journal is currently published under the name of the African Journal of Range and Forage Science.