“This is work in progress. I feel I just opened the door”

Dr. Christine Oryema’s experience studying in Denmark would be the envy of any Ugandan PhD student who does not get the opportunity to study abroad, especially in countries that provide an ideal study environment.
An ethnobotanist based at Gulu University, one of Uganda’s public universities, Dr. Oryema was among the beneficiaries of a PhD sponsorship through DANIDA’s ENRECA programme. This gave her the opportunity to spend more than 12 months of study time at the University of Copenhagen as part of her PhD programme.

Oryema, the Woman of the Wild Plants

In 2010 Christine Oryema set out to do her PhD. She was, through the process, to find and document the diversity, uses and nutrient composition of indigenous edible fruit trees of northern Uganda, particularly in Gulu and Amuru districts. Although she later narrowed her study site to just six sub counties of Gulu, she found more disturbing questions beneath the answers she sought, leading her to conclude: “I think I have just brought out this area. It has not been studied.”