The University of Lagos launch centres of excellence to boost research

The University of Lagos launch centres of excellence to boost research

The University of Lagos (UNILAG) says it has concluded arrangements for its research agenda setting workshop and launch of the African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) Centres of Excellence, would improve its PhD training and research activities. Prof Gbenga Nubi, a member of the organising committee for the workshop, said on Monday in Lagos that the ARUA centres would provide a platform for the speedy provision of solutions to everyday challenges.

The launching and workshop, planned for Sept. 6 to Sept. 7 is a collaboration between the university and ARUA. The centres of excellence to be launched are ARUA Centre of Excellence for Urbanisation and Habitable Cities in Africa and ARUA Centre of Excellence for Unemployment and Skills Development in Africa.

“The two-day event has Prof. Ernest Aryeetey, Secretary-General of ARUA and Prof. Wellington Oyibo, Director, Research and Innovation, University of Lagos as speakers.

Nubi, also the Founding Director, Centre for Housing and Sustainable Development of the institution, added that the essence of the launch was to set an agenda on what the centre would be doing in the next five years. The one time Dean, Faculty of Environmental Sciences noted that such issues confronting the society as transportation, slum and healthcare system among others would be brought to the fore.

He added that already, ARUA was ready to support these centres with millions of dollars each year for five years for improved PhD training and research. According to him, such support will spur African researchers to look at areas that should be researched into, such as urbanisation, health and others.

“That is why universities in Africa agreed after wide consultations that the way forward should be the establishment of centres of excellence in some selected universities and UNILAG happens to be one of such universities with two centres,” he said.



What’s stopping young African scientists from achieving their potential

What’s stopping young African scientists from achieving their potential

Young African scientists face persistent barriers which cause them to leave their own countries, and even academia. This means the continent’s workforce loses highly trained people who are crucial for scientific and technological advancement, and for economic development.

It’s estimated that 20,000 highly educated professionals leave the continent annually, with up to 30% of Africa’s scientists among them.

A number of factors contribute to this trend. The extreme factors include war and political instability. But the more common “pushes” are a desire for higher pay, better opportunities, and the search for a conducive research environment – one where infrastructure and management help drive careers and research potential.

Movement of survey respondents within and out of Africa over the last 10 years. Generated by Hsin-Chou Yang and Chia-Wei. Not publicly available

To identify all the barriers and develop strategies to address them, the Global Young Academy – an organisation of 200 talented young scientists and over 200 alumni from 83 countries – established the Global State of Young Scientists (GloSYS) Africa project. Working with local research partners and international higher education experts, the project aims to identify the challenges and motivations that shape young scientists’ career trajectories.

Our initial findings point to a lack of mentoring, resources and funding as key issues young scientists face across the continent. Using this data, we will be able to identify critical areas in which young scientists need support and develop innovative strategies to alleviate these challenges.

The project comes at an important time as, over the past few years, African countries have initiated programmes to increase the number of PhD graduates. But if governments don’t simultaneously develop support structures for graduates, and increase access to critical teaching and research infrastructure, these young scientists are set up to fail

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The Routledge Handbook of Diaspora Studies

The Routledge Handbook of Diaspora Studies

We are thrilled to announce EDMA member Alpha Abebe’s work on Diaspora Studies is now available in the recent publication of the Routledge Handbook of Diaspora Studies (Edited by Robin Cohen, Carolin Fischer).

The Routledge Handbook of Diaspora Studies series examines; ‘debating the concept’, ‘complexity’, ‘home and home-making’, ‘connections’ and ‘critiques’ around the topic of the Diaspora. The editors have carefully blended established scholars of diaspora with younger scholars looking at how diasporas are constructed ‘from below’.

Alpha Abebe’s work appears in Chapter 6 which looks at Performing Diaspora. This is informed by her doctoral research which focused on Ethiopian diaspora identity. To learn more about her research focus, you can read her blog entry which was first published on the International Migration Institute blog on April 7, 2017

Young diasporans travel to Southern Ethiopia, 2009 © Alpha Abete

Click here to buy of a copy of The Routledge Handbook of Diaspora Studies

About Dr. Alpha Abebe

Dr. Alpha Abebe is an Assistant Professor at McMaster University in the Faculty of Humanities. She completed her doctorate in International Development at the University of Oxford in 2016. Her research examined the ways in which people of Ethiopian descent born and/or raised in Canada and the U.S. construct a diasporic identity and engage with Ethiopian development initiatives through a mutually constitutive process. She has spent several years as an international and community development practitioner, with a focus on youth engagement and education. Alpha is also a photographer and makes use of natural light and lines to bring life to the subjects in her work, whether they be people, landscapes or mundane objects. Her art, advocacy, and academic work are all informed and strengthened by each other. Profile | Personal Website

The Ibrahim Leadership Fellowships 2019

The Ibrahim Leadership Fellowships 2019

The Ibrahim Leadership Fellowships form a selective programme designed to mentor future African leaders. Through this annual fellowship programme, we seek to deepen and broaden our growing network which continues to contribute its skills and learning to a better Africa.

The Fellowships offer the opportunity to work in the executive offices of either the AfDB (Abidjan), UNECA (Addis Ababa) or the ITC (Geneva) with an annual stipend of $100,000.

Applications for the 2019 stream are now open.

Eligibility criteria

  • National of an African country
  • 7-10 years of relevant work experience
  • Master’s degree
  • under the age of 40, or 45 for women with children
  • any additional criteria as set by the host.

To apply for a fellowship click here

Material Scientist & Professor Dr. Sossina Haile

Material Scientist & Professor Dr. Sossina Haile


Ethiopian- American chemist Sossina Haile developed the first solid acid fuel cells.

Dr Sossina has received her PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in material science and engineering. She has done several research works and received multiple awards. Dr Sossina was named by Newsweek magazine in its 2007 end of the year issue as one of twelve people to watch in 2008.




Source Tech Talk With Solomon

University of Pretoria launches new tech business incubator

University of Pretoria launches new tech business incubator

The University of Pretoria launches new tech business incubator

The University of Pretoria has announced the launch of Tuksnovation, a new high-tech business incubator which will initially support postgraduate students within the Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology (EBIT) Faculty.

“We have ramped up our efforts to implement innovative strategies to leverage and commercialise home-grown technologies in order to create sustainable new enterprises and subsequently job opportunities. We realise that by developing and commercialising research and development projects within academic institutions and by creating new spinoff companies, universities can contribute to job creation and economic development,” said Prof Cheryl de la Rey, Vice-Chancellor and Principal of UP, at the launch event.

TuksNovation was established with the support of the Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA), the Department of Small Business Development, and the Department of Trade and Industry. It has access to an extensive network of industry partnerships through its affiliation with EBIT and is currently expanding its government and industry partner networks.

There are more than 3 800 postgraduate students in the EBIT faculty and services could be expanded to other science and technology-linked faculties at UP in the future. The goal is for TuksNovation to act as a catalyst for the development of industrial clusters which positively impact the Tshwane region.

TuksNovation offers world-class technology development and commercial support through the technology and business development life cycles. It provides technology development and entrepreneurship skills support up to the industrialisation (production) phase, to ensure that the technology is fully developed and addresses a relevant market need. A virtual incubation programme focuses on technology and techno-entrepreneurship skills, while an acceleration programme focuses on commercialisation and business growth.

UP  also prepares its students for the work place through the development of entrepreneurship skills through courses offered by Enterprises UP, as acquiring a degree does not necessarily guarantee a student a job.

For more information on TuksNovation visit the website.

The 2018 South African Women in Science Awards

The 2018 South African Women in Science Awards



The South African Women in Science Awards (SAWiSA), an annual countrywide celebration of women in science and technology, led by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), will take place on 23 August in Limpopo. The DST has been hosting SAWiSA since 2003.

The awards profile women scientists and researchers who serve as role models for younger women, and encourage and reward younger women who are starting their careers as researchers and scientists.

The theme for the 2018 SAWiSA event is “100 Years of Mama Albertina Sisulu: Women United in Moving South Africa Forward”.

Prof. Azwihangwisi Helen Mavhandu-Mudzusi – Last year’s winners included a number of amazing women scooping top honours in the humanities and social science and the natural science categories. Prof Azwihangwisi Helen Mavhandu-Mudzusi, won the Humanities and Social sciences category.

Professor Mavhandu-Mudzusi – is currently a full Professor in the Department of Health Studies and the Chairperson of the Research Ethics Committee of the College of Human Sciences at the University of South Africa (UNISA). Prof. Mavhandu-Mudzusi holds a PhD in Public Administration from the University of Venda.

Professor Colleen Downs – Winning the natural sciences category was Professor Colleen Downs. She is currently a full professor of Zoology in the School of Life Sciences, and a University Fellow at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), Pietermaritzburg campus.

Professor Tricia Naicker – The women in science awards also celebrate rising stars in science, technology and innovation like Professor Tricia Naicker. She is University of KwaZulu Natal’s youngest Associate Professor in the College of Health Sciences and Academic Leader (HOD) for the Discipline of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Miss Keneilwe Hlahane – Last year Keneilwe Hlahane won the DST Fellowship in the Masters’ category. obtained her BSc Geology degree from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN).  Miss Hlahane further went on to complete a BSc Honors degree in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and is currently enrolled as a Masters student in GIS and Remote Sensing at the same university.

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Nestle MBA Scholarships for Women from Developing Countries

Nestle MBA Scholarships for Women from Developing Countries

Nestle MBA Scholarships for Women from Developing Countries

The Nestlé Scholarship for Women was first awarded in 1997 and was initiated by a group of IMD MBA participants who wanted to encourage women to take the MBA. The MBA is hosted by IMD in Switzerland. The scholarship given is up to the tune of CHF 25,000

Together with the MBA financial aid application form, you must also submit a 750-word essay using the IMD MBA Scholarship template on “Many have argued that greater diversity in the Top Management team of an organization is good for profits and customers. What would you recommend as ways to achieve greater diversity?”

The deadline for scholarship applications is 30 September annually.

It is important to visit the official website to access the application forms and for detailed information on how to apply for this scholarship.

Deadline: Sunday, September 30, 2018

Preference is given to women from developing countries.  Employees of Nestlé or its subsidiaries are not eligible.
Country: Kenya, Mozambique + more
For more information and apply click here.
Skoll Scholarship 2018

Skoll Scholarship 2018

Are you eligible for the Skoll Scholarship?

1. Entrepreneurial action

  • You have identified opportunities and taken action in order to make a positive social impact
  • You have spent preferably at least 3 years driving change through entrepreneurial approaches. For example, you could have:
    • Started or grown a social venture
    • OR led the expansion of a social impact initiative within an organisation
    • OR been tackling a specific social/environmental issue, through a core thread that unites your work

2. Creating impact with a focus on systems change

  • You can demonstrate the outcomes and impact of your entrepreneurial action
  • Your impact addresses unjust systems and practise in your area of work

3. Personal qualities of a social entrepreneur

  • You are a force for positive change
  • You are single-minded and persistent, with a willingness to fail and start again
  • You have bias toward action
  • You have a tendency to explore your environment for opportunities and resources
  • You have a willingness to take personal, and sometimes financial, risks
  • You develop networks and leverage members to pursue mutual goals
  • You have apprenticed with the problem* or experienced the problem you are trying to solve

4. The Oxford MBA is critical to your career trajectory

  • You can demonstrate why business education is essential in helping to develop your work/impact at this stage

5. Financial need

  • You are in a position where the cost of the programme is a significant financial burden
  • You can demonstrate the need for the Scholarship (for example, due to previous work experiences or personal circumstances)

*“Apprenticing with a Problem”, a term we borrowed from Jessamyn Shams-Lau at the Peery Foundation, refers to someone developing a deep understanding of a problem they did not live through themselves, e.g. by working in the field, working at a related organisation, conducting research, etc. A simple example of someone apprenticing with a problem is a teacher who has gone on to start an education-focused non-profit.

Diversity and Inclusion: We value and encourage diversity within the Skoll Scholarship Community.  In order to successfully tackle world-scale problems, we must bring together individuals from different cultures, religions, sectors, genders, backgrounds, and ideologies to create collaborative solutions. Belonging to a diverse community enriches our Scholars’ learning experience, teaches them to challenge ideas and be challenged in a respectful manner, and fosters a global perspective necessary in today’s world. Therefore we encourage all candidates to apply for the Scholarship, especially women, members of historically underrepresented groups, and those from the global south.

To apply for the Skoll Scholarship, you first need to apply and be accepted onto the Saïd Business School’s MBA programme. Candidates must apply in stages 1-2 of the MBA admissions process for the 2018-19 academic year.

To be considered for the scholarship, you must tick the “Skoll Scholarship” box when you submit your MBA application. Once you’ve received confirmation that you have been accepted onto the MBA programme, the Skoll Centre will send you a link to the Scholarship online application which you will need to complete. The deadlines for Stage 1 and 2 admission rounds are 7 September 2018 and 2 November 2018 respectively.

For details and application steps click here.

UNIL Master’s Grants in Switzerland for Foreign Students

UNIL Master’s Grants in Switzerland for Foreign Students

UNIL Master’s grants

Masters scholarships are scholarships for excellence awarded exclusively to students who have graduated from a foreign university and whose academic results are of a very high level.

UNIL grants around ten scholarships a year.

The scholarship is granted for the minimum statutory period of the programme chosen by the student. It amounts to CHF 1,600 per month from 15 September to 15 July (or 10 months a year) for the complete duration of the masters (one and a half years or two years depending on the chosen masters), with the exception of cases of definitive failure after the first year.

Candidates are made aware of the fact that the sum of the scholarship awarded is not sufficient to live in Switzerland.

With regard to this, we invite candidates to consult the following page about the reference budget of a student at UNIL:–infos-utiles/informations-utiles/taxes-detudes-et-cout-de-la.html

Students offered a scholarship will be exempt from the fixed registration fees for the courses, with the exception of the CHF 80.00 fees to be paid each semester.

What are the programmes for which it is possible to apply for a Masters scholarship?

First of all, it is not possible to apply for the following programmes:

  • Master from the School of Medicine
  • Master of education
  • Master of Law from the Universities of Zurich and Lausanne
  • Master of criminal Law, magistracy specialism
  • All MASs (PhD programmes)

The list of all Masters degrees at UNIL that it is possible to apply for with the exception of the one that are mentioned above, can be found at the following link.

Please note: for the Master of Law, only two specialisms,”international and comparative law” and “legal theory” are open to applications for Masters scholarships.

What are the conditions necessary for applying for a Masters scholarship?

  • To have obtained a foreign university degree considered equivalent to a bachelor at UNIL before the beginning of the masters programme at UNIL.
  • To have distinguished yourself during your studies, especially through particularly brilliant academic results.
  • To have a language level of at least B2 (according to the European Language Portfolio global scale) in French or English according to the language in which your chosen masters is taught.
  • Not to have been registered with UNIL in the past.
  • To have paid the CHF 200.00 administration fee (see document, “list of documents to attach to your application”).

Withdrawal from the programme will lead to the suspension of the scholarship.

How can I apply for a Masters scholarship?

Candidates must send their completed application (refer to the document, “list of documents to attach to your application”), unbound, by post only to the following address:

Université de Lausanne
Service des affaires sociales et de la mobilité étudiante (SASME)
Bâtiment Unicentre
CH – 1015 Lausanne

The application form must be completed on a computer and duly signed by the candidate.

The application for the Masters scholarship also serves as an application for admission to your chosen masters (and therefore an application to register at UNIL).

You must not make an application for admission to the masters degree via the Admissions Department (SII).

The deadline for applications is 1 November to begin a masters degree during the following academic year, in the autumn semester or the spring semester if the programme allows. The postmark will attest to the date sent.

Incomplete applications, particularly those lacking certified copies of the academic documents requested, will not be considered.

Calendar of the selection process

  • 1 November: application deadline
  • November-December: Processing of applications by the Social Affairs and Student Mobility Office (SASME) and the Admissions department (SII)
  • December-January: The SASME informs candidates whose application is incomplete or has not been accepted by the admissions department that their application for the scholarship has been unsuccessful.
  • January-February: Complete applications are transferred to the faculties for consideration of their eligibility for the chosen masters degrees.
  • February-March: The SASME informs candidates whose application has not been accepted by the faculty.
  • March: The selection board for masters scholarships selects the candidates who will be offered a masters scholarship.
  • Early April: candidates are informed of the selection board’s decision.

Further information and to apply click here

AIMS launches African Master’s in Machine Intelligence

AIMS launches African Master’s in Machine Intelligence

The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) announces the launch of a one-year intensive African Master’s in Machine Intelligence (AMMI) in partnership with Facebook and Google.  The master’s will begin this September at the AIMS-Rwanda campus in Kigali.

“Machine Intelligence (MI) is revolutionizing critical aspects of our lives. It enhances medical diagnosis, improves industrial processes and enables scientific discoveries. Over the past decade, thanks to large public and private investments, MI has progressed rapidly in both basic research and the development of a vast array of applications. However, the talent pool currently advancing MI is modest and unrepresentative of the diversity of our world, leaving us less capable of facing global challenges. The challenges we choose to work on are strongly influenced by our backgrounds and our environment. Our goal with AMMI is to train a generation of young scientists who will bring a fresh perspective to machine intelligence research and contribute to advancing its development across Africa, for the benefit of its society” said Dr. Mouhamadou Moustapha Cissé, Founder and Director of the AMMI program and Professor of Machine Learning at AIMS.

AIMS, together with its partners, believes creating an effective, globally connected community of Machine Intelligence practitioners in Africa will reduce the technology gap, strengthen Africa’s economies and enable better governance.

Commenting on the partnership, Jerome Pesenti, VP of Artificial Intelligence said: “We’re proud to be partnering with AIMS and Google to launch the African Master’s in Machine Intelligence programme.  At Facebook our goal is to drive positive social and economic impact across Africa, and this partnership is another step in driving innovation by supporting the continent’s already exciting tech ecosystem and talent pool. We’re excited to see how students will utilise advanced technologies to solve problems and build solutions for the future of Africa and the rest of the world. We look forward to seeing them contribute to the growing ecosystem of African machine intelligence scientists and bring a fresh perspective on the challenges tackled by the scientific community.”

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