Our aims



The Africa Research Excellence Fund aims to improve the quality and impact of health research in Africa by nurturing talented, emerging researchers to do the best health research in Africa, for Africa. We want to grow the community of African researchers who lead and partner excellent, collaborative health research that benefits patients, populations, policy makers and practitioners throughout the region and globally.

You can be part of our vision and help us achieve it. Please read more about our programmes and how you can get involved:


Numbers of Africans with PhDs have increased but numbers of African research scientists winning international health research grants lag. AREF has been created to address this major concern. I wholeheartedly support its focus on the development of the next generation of grant-winning African scientists. I am delighted that AREF transcends Anglo/Francophone barriers. It is what we need in 2015: new spirit, new energy and excellence in Africa.

Professor Francine Ntoumi, (Fondation Congolaise pour la Recherche Médicale; Faculty of Health Sciences, University Marien Ngouabi, Republic of Congo.



I am excited that the MRC is enabling Tumani to build on his achievements as a successful director of MRC Unit, The Gambia to nurture the next generation of African science leaders through AREF.

Professor Sir John Savill, Chief Executive, Medical Research Council (UK).


Professor Sir Andy Haines shares his views on why Africa is losing its next generation of health researchers.