Our vision is to improve the quality and impact of health research in Africa by building a community of inspired African health researchers who deliver world-class, life-saving research to all.

Science is flourishing in parts of Africa. Thanks to improved investment in PhD training programmes, a new generation of talented and dynamic African health researchers is emerging.

However, this boost in training investment is not matched by opportunities for early-career researchers aiming to develop their own research ideas, and take the next steps in their career.

Many researchers cannot access essential opportunities needed to develop compelling research ideas, access world-class advisors and mentors, build and manage collaborations, win scarce funding and eventually lead their own research team.

Career barriers like these obstruct the transition from an emerging, postdoctoral researcher to an independently thinking researcher pursuing their own life-saving ambitions. It means many of the brightest young stars are being held back in their ambitions, tempted abroad or out of research and into other sectors.

This loss of talent is to Africa’s detriment, because African researchers are well equipped to meet the challenges of improving health in their country. Their linguistic knowledge, understanding of social and cultural challenges and appreciation of how technology can best be used gives them crucial expertise that could be harnessed to benefit their local communities and beyond.

Nurturing the next generation of research leaders

We are dedicated to expanding on the network of talented and hardworking early-career researchers across Africa, providing them with the resources, opportunities and connections to build longstanding successful careers in their fields of research.

To stem the loss of young talent and nurture Africa as the next hub for global science and research, our focus is on supporting emerging health researchers in the early stages of their career – specifically those who have received their PhD within the last six years.

We provide outstanding postdoctoral researchers with great opportunities to strengthen technical and transferable skills, extend their professional relationships, and develop high-quality and competitive research ideas and proposals to become tomorrow’s leaders.

We must invest in promising young African scientists, they are the innovators and leaders that will transform our continent’s health. The Africa Research Excellence Fund is Africa-based, African-led, for African scientists and we are all committed to African health. It is an important initiative.” 
Kofi Annan