The Africa Fellows in Education (AFE) Program for the 2023/2024 period is currently welcoming applicants who are passionate about education. The AFE Program aims to address the lack of local capacity to use student outcome data effectively to improve policy and schools in Sub-Saharan Africa. The program provides assistance to a group of policy fellows in the local community by improving their abilities to assess educational research, utilize performance data, and integrate high-quality evidence into their decision-making procedures. It is open to young African researchers who are motivated to work on educational improvement and offers a two-year research and policy development fellowship with access to international networks of researchers and policy advisers. The AFE Program is supported by the Yidan Prize and is offered by the Global Education Analytics Institute (GEAI) in partnership with PEP.
Structure and Activities of the Africa Fellows in Education (AFE) Program: Combining In-Country Training and International Networking Opportunities
The AFE Program’s structure is designed to incorporate activities both within and outside the home country. The successful fellows will participate in two international conferences on the economics of education, namely the CESifo Economics of Education conference and the Association for Education Finance and Policy (AEFP) conference. They will also attend short courses tailored to their needs, covering topics such as evaluation methods, communications, and incentive structures, and lectures on testing and performance measurement. These activities will help them develop international connections and an understanding of the use of large-scale testing data from international and regional assessments. The training will take place in two sessions, one in September 2023 and the other in March 2024.
During the fellowship period, fellows will work on a research/evaluation project supervised by the program and local scientific mentors. A part-time local facilitator will monitor their progress and reinforce new skills. Fellows will explore local assessments and evaluations of educational issues, and a team of advisors from Stanford University and other organizations will provide direct support and supervision throughout and after the fellowship period.
Fellows will be expected to complete their project in two years, organize workshops to disseminate research findings, and present their final report at the GEAI-PEP-organized conference in June 2025.
Benefits of the AFE Program
The funding package for the AFE Program includes a $35K research grant in cash, along with other valuable benefits. Fellows will have the opportunity to receive mentorship, attend study visits and international conferences, and participate in in-country workshops to disseminate their research findings and receive additional training. These additional expenses, which can amount to up to $25K, will be fully covered by the program.
To be considered for this opportunity, interested candidates must meet the following criteria:
- Applicants must be nationals of a Sub-Saharan African country, such as Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo (Brazzaville), Congo (Democratic Republic), Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
- Applicants must possess an MA or Ph.D. degree, preferably in Economics, education policy, social/public policy, development studies, or international development, with a strong focus on education. Although having a Ph.D. is not mandatory, fresh Ph.D. graduates are encouraged to apply as they can benefit from mentorship and additional training to become solid researchers.
- Applicants must have proficiency in quantitative data analysis, including a strong knowledge of data analysis software such as R and Stata.
- Applicants need to be under the age of 35.
- Applicants must demonstrate a keen interest in education policy research and analysis.
- Applicants must have an affiliation with a research or higher education institution in a Sub-Saharan African country and intend to maintain the affiliation for the foreseeable future.
- Female candidates who meet the requirements are highly encouraged to submit their application.
How to Apply for Africa Fellows in Education Program 2023/2024?
The process of applying for the Africa Fellows program is overseen by GEAI in conjunction with PEP. Your application will be evaluated based on several factors, such as prior preparation and quality of essay. The expression of interest by applicants should include:
- A two-page statement of interest.
- A two-page essay discussing a specific education problem in their home country and how it can be scientifically evaluated using quantitative methods. The essay should be in English.
- A detailed and updated CV with at least two referees who the selection committee can contact.
Follow these steps to apply;
STEP 1: Register on the PEP website by clicking “Register” (located at the top right corner of the PEP website, next to “Login”) and complete all necessary information. Your profile will be activated within 24 hours. Your username is your email address.
STEP 2: Access your PEP account by clicking on the “Login” button (also located at the top right corner).
STEP 3: Click on your name (located at the top right corner of your PEP account page) to complete your profile. Include all relevant information such as birthday, highest diploma, institution, position, etc., and upload your updated CV. It is also recommended to include a photo and short professional bio. Once finished, click “Submit” at the bottom of your profile page.
STEP 4: Under “My workspace” (located at the top left corner), select “Submit a proposal” from the menu. Follow the instructions and upload your statement of interest and essay as a combined document. To ensure your submission was successful, go to “My Projects” under “My workspace” and select the project. You can find or replace/update your document under “Documents”.
Deadline for applications is 21st May 2023 (23:59 GMT).