The Global Education Analytics Institute (GEAI), in collaboration with PEP, invites young African researchers who are motivated to work on educational improvement and could benefit from additional support to submit an expression of interest in the Africa Fellows in Education (AFE) Programme.
The AFE programme enables the fellows to participate in a two-year research and policy development fellowship that introduces them to relevant research and analytical experiences and to international networks of researchers and policy advisers.
The objective of the AFE is to build a group of Africa-based leaders capable of developing evidence and shaping educational policies that are relevant for their countries. They would be part of a global network of such people and, if successful, could also help build local networks of strong advocates for improvement of schools.
- The proposed program is organised around a combination of in-country activities and network/training opportunities abroad. Under the two out-of-country segments, it is expected that the successful fellows will have the opportunity to attend two of the most prominent international conferences on the economics of education – the CESifo Economics of Education conference and the Association for Education Finance and Policy (AEFP) conference. (The exact conference and travel schedule is subject to change based on the prevailing circumstances.) In addition to these conferences, the fellows will participate in a series of short courses designed to be most suitable to their needs, covering topics such as evaluation methods, communications, incentive structures, and other related areas, while also providing fellows with the opportunity to foster international connections. Further, they will have a series of lectures around testing and performance measurement. This introduction will enable fellows to understand the use of large-scale testing data from various international and regional assessments and will also sensitise them to general issues around the use of standardised testing. The first two weeks of training will be in September 2023 and the other two-week training session will be held in March 2024.
- While in their home countries, the fellows will develop a research/evaluation project to be carried out (mainly) in the second year under program supervision and with local scientific mentors. The initiative will engage a part-time local facilitator to monitor the progress of each fellow and to reinforce new skills. This approach will lead to fellows exploring the existing state of local assessments and evaluations of educational issues. Both during the fellowship period and afterward, a team of advisors from Stanford University and other organisations in Africa and internationally will provide direct support and supervision. Fellows are expected to complete the project in two years, organise in-country policy outreach workshops to disseminate the research findings, and present the final report at the GEAI-PEP-organised conference in June 2025.
- Funding includes a $35K research (cash) grant. Other expenses, with a value of up to $25K, for mentorship, study visits, conference travel, and in-country workshops to share research findings and training will be covered directly by the programme.
Fellow’s key responsibilities
During the two years of the programme, each fellow will be expected to achieve the following milestones:
- By the end of the first year, and having consulted with relevant policy makers/stakeholders, write a concept research proposal focusing on a specific education problem in their home country or any other Sub-Saharan African country. Motivate the selected (education) research issues and objectives, outline the data sources and proposed methodology, and provide a clear plan for completing the project by June 2025.
- Attend all short-term training courses arranged by GEAI, in collaboration with PEP.
- Over the two years, work closely with local and international scientific mentors to develop and complete the research project.
- Present the project’s work-in-progress and final reports at local and international conferences organised by GEAI and its partners.
- Complete the project in two years and present the final report at the GEAI-PEP organised conference in June 2025. The final report must be rigorous enough to meet contemporary research and evaluation standards.
- Write a policy brief based on the final technical research report.
- Write a policy blog
- Organise in-country policy outreach workshops to disseminate the research findings.
To be eligible for this programme, applicants must:
- Be a national of a Sub-Saharan African country;
- Have 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. While a Ph.D. is not mandatory, GEAI encourages fresh Ph.D. graduates who can benefit from mentorship and additional training to become solid researchers;
- Be proficient in quantitative data analysis, with a strong knowledge of data analysis software such as R and Stata;
- Not be older than 35 years old;
- Demonstrate interest in education policy research and analysis;
- Have an affiliation at a research or higher education institution in a Sub-Saharan African country, and intend to do so for the foreseeable future;
- Qualified females are strongly encouraged to apply.
Application procedure and deadline
Applicants are advised to visit Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP) for information on application procedure. Application deadline is May 21, 2023.
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