The Cambridge-Africa Programme is an umbrella name for a range of initiatives: MUII, THRiVE, CAPREx, the Cambridge-Africa Alborada Research Fund, and the Wellcome-Trust Cambridge Centre for Global Health Research. The Programme is a working partnership between the University of Cambridge and several African universities and institutes. Cambridge-Africa aims to strengthen Africa’s own capacity for a sustainable research and mentoring culture, by cultivating the talented individuals who will make this long-term goal a reality. We therefore support the training of African doctoral and post-doctoral researchers, as well as research managers and administrators, in Cambridge and Africa. Carefully selected African researchers, research managers and administrators are awarded fellowships to visit Cambridge periodically for training and mentoring. Cambridge researchers also visit Africa to provide mentorship, and help with teaching and running workshops. A website recently constructed to provide information about all our initiatives and the various 'Africa-related' links at the University of Cambridge is now available to view at http://www.cambridge-africa.cam.ac.uk/.
Introduction to the THRiVE Programme
Africa bears a disproportional amount of the world’s disease burden and this in turn has a significant negative impact on its people and the continent’s economic development. Scientific infrastructure and research training are weak and under-resourced in many parts of Africa, contributing to a failure to apply modern technologies and medical advances to the health challenges still facing much of the continent. The strengthening of Africa’s indigenous scientific research base is crucial to the identification of its disease control and public health priorities, and to the discovery and successful application of appropriate solutions. The “Training Health Researchers into Vocational Excellence in East Africa” (THRiVE) partnership, led by Makerere University in Uganda, aims to strengthen institutional research capacity in East Africa, and to support the next generation of East African researchers to become internationally competitive and self-sustaining scientific leaders, seeding a regional research community with the critical mass to address African health priorities.
THRiVE has matched outstanding young researchers with exciting projects over a wide range of disciplines, and is supporting them with committed teams of scientific mentors. The University of Cambridge, along with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, is providing training, co-supervision and mentorship for THRiVE PhD and post-doctoral fellows registered in the African partner universities. The first fellowships begun in 2011.
The Director of the THRiVE consortium is Professor Nelson Sewankambo at Makerere University. The main THRiVE consortium website is available at http://www.thrive.or.ug.
Cambridge University's role in the THRiVE programme
Cambridge University is one of the world’s leading research-based multi-faculty universities, and has outstanding research capabilities and influence. As a partner in the THRiVE programme, Cambridge is keen to provide co-ordinated, cross-faculty research strengthening and scientific training activities to African scientists. This would help to tackle regional health problems in Africa and support Africans in developing their own regional centers of excellence for scientific education and training. Central to this programme is the principle of supporting African PhD and post-doctoral research on African priorities, in Africa.