AREF Research Fellowship

AREF Research Development Fellowship 2017 for Sub-Sahara African Students

AREF Research Fellowship is supporting researches in Europe or South Africa by Sub-Sahara African citizens to enhance the competitiveness of early-career Africans with potential for leadership and to work towards a major funding proposal.

Application Deadline: 28th June 2017

Offered annually? Yes

Eligible Countries: Citizens of countries in sub-Sahara Africa excluding South Africa can apply for this fellowship.

To be taken at (country): Europe or South Africa

Eligible Field of Study: Not specified

About the Award: AREF Research Fellowship is designed to enable talented, early-career African researchers to develop their own research ideas and specialist skills, to grow their research relationships through collaboration and mentorship, and to work towards a major funding proposal. This year, funding will be made available for a “planned follow-through” in the awardee’s home institution.

Offered Since: 2015

Type: Research Fellowship


  • Be a national of a country in sub-Saharan Africa excluding South Africa;
  • Be a post-doctoral scientist with a PhD, with up to 4-years of active research experience on 1 July  2016; or be an active clinician with a relevant Master’s degree and up to 3-years active research experience;
  • Be working in an active research role at the time of applying, with a guarantee of employment with a university or other legally established research organisation in sub-Saharan Africa for the duration of your fellowship; and
  • Submit the required documentation, including declarations from your home and host organisations detailing how they will support your development as a researcher, if you receive an award.

In addition:

  • We welcome applicants who are already employed within a sub-Saharan African research organisation, or who would be returning to a position in such an organisation by the time they take up the AREF Fellowship having worked in a research active role abroad.
  • You may still be eligible even if your employing organisation is outside Sub-Saharan Africa provided that you have an appropriate honorary contract in the subregion and you are based at least 70% of your time in Africa.
  • AREF’s regulations do not yet permit the funding of Fellowships in South Africa.   This may change during 2017.  If this might affect you, you are welcome to ask us for an update.

Selection Criteria: Applicants should be specific about how they would use an AREF Fellowship as a stepping stone to a more substantial grant or fellowship – in the context of an ambitious and feasible career-development plan.

Number of Awardees: Not specified

Value of Fellowship: The maximum award is £43,000 GB Pounds for a nine-month placement. The length of the placement and actual amount awarded will depend on the detailed justification provided by the applicant and their sponsoring institutions.

Duration of Fellowship: Three(3) to nine (9) months

How to Apply: Application should be submitted by email to

Application Form

Visit Fellowship Webpage for details

Award Provider: Africa Research Excellence Fund

Important Notes: Applicants who are already employed within a sub-Sahara African research organisation (excluding South Africa), or who would be returning to a position in such an organisation by the time they take up the AREF Fellowship having worked in a research active role abroad, are welcome.

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