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Projects and Initiatives

In order to better take stock of current work being done in the realm of doctoral education, ‘Projects and Initiatives’ presents information about projects being carried out by organizations related to postgraduate training and management. Projects listed here share a common focus, all or in part, on African higher education.

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   Association of African Universities (AAU)

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The Association of African Universities (AAU), is headquartered in Accra, Ghana, and is an apex organization.  The Association provides a platform for research, reflection, consultation, debates, co-operation and collaboration on issues pertaining to higher education. It provides a range of services to its members and serves African higher education in a variety of ways. It has established and increased its role in the five sub-regions of Africa and can assemble teams of experts in relevant fields from the sub-regions.


Tasks: Network, Research, Information, South-South Relations, Funding

Targets: All

Countries: All African Countries


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DATAD - Database of African Theses and Dissertations

AAU has several programmes and services that have implications for doctoral research and training on the continent. Their website includes several online resources for African higher education institutions including the Database of African Theses and Dissertations (DATAD) and information on various research project being undertaken regarding African higher education.

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ACE - African Centres of Excellence Project

The Phase I Africa Centers of Excellence (ACE) Project for West and Central Africa covers the themes of Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Health Sciences and Agricultural Sciences. The World Bank in collaboration with West and Central African countries launched the Africa Centers of Excellence project. AAU is the key regional facilitation partner.
The Project Objectives are to:

  1. promote regional specialization among participating universities in areas that address specific common regional development challenges,
  2. strengthen the capacities of these universities to deliver high quality training and applied research,
  3. meet the demand for skills required for Africa's development, such as the extractive industries,
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Small Grants for Dissertations and Theses Programme

In the face of the prevailing economic conditions on the continent, many graduate students in African universities often encounter hardship in respect of the necessary resources to complete their research programmes on time or produce work of high quality.

The Small Grants for Dissertations and Theses Programme is aimed at dealing with this problem, which has a profound effect on human resource development in the higher education sector.

The objectives of this program are to facilitate the early completion of research Dissertations and Theses by graduate students in African universities; to improve the quality of research conducted by graduate students in African universities.

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ECOWAS Academic Mobility Scheme

The ECOWAS Academic Mobility Scheme is an initiative that is a response to the recommendation of the ECOWAS Ministers in charge of Higher Education and Scientific Research. The ECOWAS Ministers recommended, inter alia, that the ECOWAS Commission should “Create within the region, an academic mobility system for students and teachers (including diaspora) and encourage institutions to put in place language immersion programmes to promote mobility of students and teachers in the region.”


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