The West African Science Leadership Programme launched

The West Africa Science Leadership Programme (W-ASLP) was launched during a three-day leadership training workshop from the 21st to the 23rd of July 2019 at the West African Centre for Cell Biology of Infectious Pathogens (WACCBIP), University of Ghana. The three-day science leadership workshop offered a comprehensive career development and leadership initiative for early-career scientists in West Africa. The programme was done in collaboration between WACCBIP, the African Science Initiative (ASI) and the Africa Science Leadership Programme (ASLP) of Future Africa at the University of Pretoria. The program was jointly funded by these organizations, as well as the by the Bosch Foundation. 

The W-ASLP is the first regional version of the Africa Science Leadership Programme (ASLP) to be launched. Further regional programmes in West, North and Southern Africa are planned for later this year and early 2020. ASLP is a joint initiative of Future Africa at the University of Pretoria and the Global Young Academy, delivered in partnership with Inclusive Innovation, and funded by the Robert Bosch Foundation. The programme aims to develop early-career academics in thought leadership, team management and research development which are essential in the professional and career growth of African research leaders. The programme also aims to create a network of African science leaders, connected throughout the continent of Africa, and across all academic disciplines. This is a platform that will help to increase the visibility of African contributions to science and promote the production of impactful and responsible research geared towards finding innovative solutions to complex problems in Africa.

The workshop was organised by Dr. Lydia Mosi, Head of Department for Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology, University of Ghana and a 2018 ASLP fellow, Dr. Connie Nshemerierwe an independent science and policy facilitator and co-chair of the GYA and Professor Bernard Slippers, the founding Director of Future Africa and the ASLP Programme. ASLP fellows, Drs Leshi Oluwatosin, Priscilla Kolibea, and Victorien Dougnon, acted as mentors at the workshop. The leadership program was attended by a total of 18 early-career academics from Benin, Gambia, Ghana, Nigeria, and Cameroon. The vision is to use this initial workshop as a spark to expand the implementation of science leadership programs in the region.