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SFA Foundation to fund research advancing social sciences and humanities

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

The Science for Africa Foundation (SFA Foundation) is announcing a USD million-dollar programme to fund research to advance the fields of social sciences and humanities in Africa...

10 October 2022— The Science for Africa Foundation (SFA Foundation) is announcing a USD million-dollar programme to fund research to advance the fields of social sciences and humanities in Africa and to enable the production of evidence to inform sustainable development in Africa.

Social sciences and humanities help in gaining knowledge of society. These underfunded science disciplines in Africa rely mostly on international funding with minimal government funding that translates into little support for institutions dedicated to the field in academic and non-governmental sectors (The State of Social Science in Africa, 2010).

The SFA Foundation’s Preparing Outstanding Social Science Investigators to Benefit Lives and Environments in Africa Programme (POSSIBLE-Africa) is a two-year programme implemented with philanthropic support from Carnegie Corporation of New York. POSSIBLE-Africa will support up to 25 African postdoctoral fellowships increasing the number of scholars contributing solutions to challenges facing Africa and the world.

“You cannot effectively transform societies without understanding human behavior which underpins the importance of humanities and social sciences. As we promote multi-disciplinary research, our aim is to build that critical mass of skills in all disciplines and especially so in those that drive uptake and use of research evidence.” said Judy Omumbo, POSSIBLE-Africa lead at the SFA Foundation.

 “We value Science for Africa Foundation’s expertise and extensive networks in higher education on the continent. Extending its work and research agenda to addressing critical gaps in the social science and humanities through supporting early-career African scholars will contribute to the advancement of the continent’s development.” said Claudia Frittelli, programme director, Carnegie Corporation. 

Up to 25 Fellows will receive $65,000 during their two-year postdoctoral fellowships. They will be expected to:

  • Conduct research and attend a 12-week training course, which will give POSSIBLE-Africa's researchers opportunities to advance their research knowledge and skills.  
  • Spend 40 hours in additional formal learning to address gaps in their research and related skills.
  • Implement at least one policy or public engagement activity.
  • Engage as mentees within a structured programme, in which they will receive tailored career guidance from a senior mentor through scheduled virtual sessions.
  • Attend and present their research in monthly virtual feedback series.
  • Produce and submit a minimum of two lead-authored, short form scientific outputs (e.g., book chapter or journal article) to a reputable publisher (journal or book).
  • Contribute to curriculum development activities that use the skills, knowledge and/or findings generated through the fellowship.

Further information for prospective applicants:

  • Applicants must have graduated with a PhD in social sciences and humanities within the last 5-10 years, be citizens of an African country and be affiliated to an academic or research institution.
  • Applications will be submitted via the SFA Foundation’s grant management system Agaseke accessed here:
  • The call for applications can be accessed here
  • Applications close on 11 December 2022
  • Enquiries can be emailed to [email protected] with responses to enquiries shared on Monday – Friday from 0800 hrs – 1700 hrs EAT.

About the SFA Foundation

The SFA Foundation is a pan-African, non-profit and public charity organisation that supports, strengthens, and promotes science and innovation in Africa. The SFA Foundation serves the African research ecosystem by funding excellent ideas in research and innovation; enabling interdisciplinary collaborations and building and reinforcing environments that are conducive for scientists to thrive and produce quality research that generates new, locally relevant knowledge.

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