Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa
Conseil pour le développement de la recherche en sciences sociales en Afrique
Conselho para o Desenvolvimento da Pesquisa em Ciências Sociais em África
مجلس تنمية البحوث الإجتماعية في أفريقيا


African Diaspora Support to African Universities: Call for Senior African Diaspora Academics to serve in the CODESRIA College of Mentors

Deadline: 30th. April 2019
Questions and Inquiries: submission@codesria.org

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The Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA), with support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY) is implementing an “African Academic Diaspora Support to African Universities Program.” One component of the program entails linking senior African Diaspora academics in the social sciences, the humanities and higher education studies to doctoral students in African universities. This project links the students, their primary supervisors and the diaspora scholars for joint mentorship and academic support of the students. This activity is undertaken under the CODESRIA College of Mentors (COM). The overall objective of the program is to have African academics in the Diaspora contribute to improving doctoral supervisory practices and student completion rates by augmenting the doctoral supervision capacity in African universities. The College of Mentor’s initiative also seeks to tap into the academic resources of the African academic Diaspora in North America, Europe and elsewhere, as well as the Diaspora within Africa, to help strengthen capacity in teaching, research and mentoring in the social sciences and humanities in African universities.

CODESRIA has also over the years contributed to strengthening the institutional base of higher education and knowledge production in African universities and the nurturing of new generations of teachers and researchers for Africa’s universities. Academic units within African universities (departments, research centres and schools) remain the anchors through which the council operationalizes its programs. Over the years, as universities have expanded, sometimes in the midst of funding crunches, the cadre of staff at the senior levels who can mentor a new generation of academics has been depleted. Doctoral students, especially in the social sciences and humanities face challenges related to inadequacy of supervision and mentorship capacities, dwindling quality of the supervision process and longer completion times.

In the early part of 2019, CODESRIA intends to recruit 50 doctoral students in the social science and humanities from accredited public universities in Africa and place them under the College to benefit from the mentorship program. As part of this initiative, CODESRIA intends to recruit 15 senior academics from the Diaspora to complement existing academics who are already serving in the College of Mentors. The College of Mentors is a grouping of senior academics from the Humanities and Social sciences who are theoretically grounded in their specific areas of research and are well published, who are willing to devote some time to mentoring students enrolled in doctoral programs in African universities. Selected mentors and mentees will be brought together at a ‘College of mentors’ summer institute scheduled to take place in August 2019. The institute will provide the opportunity for mentors and mentees to get to interact directly learn more about each other’s research interests and get to establish supervisory unions on the basis of shared interests. Following the summer institute during which the framework for engagement will be clearly elaborated upon, mentors will either directly choose, or be put in touch with one or two students whom they would guide by

  • Reading draft chapters of their dissertations,
  • Suggesting relevant reading material; and
  • Exposing them to scholarly debates they need to be aware of.

The call specifically targets senior African Diaspora in the social sciences, humanities and higher education studies based at universities in North America, Europe or Asia. African academics based at universities or other higher education and research institutions in Africa but outside of their own countries may also apply. Mentors will be compensated with a modest honorarium after a midterm review of the project.

Mode of Application

African academics in the Diaspora wishing to be considered should send detailed current CV’s and a brief note expressing interest to serve in the College. The documents should be sent to the CODESRIA online submission system using this link College of Mentors

The deadline for submission of applications is 30th April 2019.




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