Overview of Activities

Learning from the documented experiences of others

A literature review of academic and grey literature of postdoctoral fellowship models internationally (in both the global north and south) will inform the development of a draft framework for designing and implementing impactful postdoctoral fellowships in Africa.

This is a foundational component of the project as there is currently limited available literature that examines the documented experiences from the perspective of their relevance and potential transferability for the African context. This will enable future African postdoctoral fellowships to be even more intentionally conceptualised.

 

Learning with and from stakeholders

Two primary stakeholder groups will be engaged in the peer-learning processes: those responsible for administering and delivering postdoctoral fellowships in Africa (this includes all of the Carnegie-supported postdoctoral project directors, as well as a selection of invited academics and leaders responsible for postdoctoral programmes not directly funded by Carnegie) and postdoctoral fellows sponsored by Carnegie-funded projects.

Three beneficiary workshops – rotated between East Africa, West Africa, and Southern Africa – will be held. The workshops serve several purposes – they provide the opportunity for peer-learning among the fellowship implementers, opportunity for networking and peer-learning among postdoctoral fellows  and the opportunity for the PERKA team to learn from the experiences of both of the aforementioned. 

Two beneficiary workshops have been held to date – April 2019 (Pretoria, South Africa) and November 2019 (Dar es Salaam, Tanzania). The third beneficiary workshop will be held in 2020.

 

Generating knowledge

An iterative process of documenting – convening – refining documentation (in an action research approach) will be established to ensure that the lessons learned at the beneficiary meetings are recorded and incorporated into the series of knowledge products.

At minimum, the following are envisaged:

  • The literature review will be incorporated into a publishable article related to postdoctoral fellowship in Africa, contributing to the science of African science literature.
  • A report documenting good practice guidelines, targeted at multiple audiences (e.g. donors, funders, institutional leaders, and project implementers).
  • Advising communiques for early-career researchers considering a postdoctoral fellowship.
  • A public communication report showcasing the research conducted by the postdoctoral fellows.
- Author Dr Melody Mentz-Coetzee
Published by Kirsty Nepomuceno

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