Established in 2008, African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD) was launched following a successful three-year pilot program in East Africa supported by the Rockefeller Foundation from 2005-2008.
AWARD is a career-development program that equips top women agricultural scientists across sub-Saharan Africa to accelerate agricultural gains by strengthening their research and leadership skills, through tailored fellowships. AWARD is a catalyst for innovations with high potential to contribute to the prosperity and well-being of African smallholder farmers, most of whom are women.
AWARD Fellows benefit from a two-year career-development program focused on fostering mentoring partnerships, building science skills, and developing leadership capacity. Following a highly competitive process, the fellowships are awarded on the basis of intellectual merit, leadership capacity, and the potential of the scientist's research to improve the daily lives of smallholder farmers, especially women.
To date, AWARD has received applications from almost 3,000 women for a total of 320 available fellowships. On average, only the top nine percent of applicants are selected each year.
Currently, 320 African women scientists from 11 countries (Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia) have benefitted directly as AWARD Fellows.
AWARD partners with more than 200 organizations and institutions, including many national institutes of agricultural research.
We are also grateful for the many national, regional, and international research institutions, and other organizations, which have provided in-kind support.
AWARD offers one year of mentoring for all fellows. Mentoring is a proven and powerful driver for career development and particularly for retaining women in science. All of AWARD mentors are men and women in senior positions. They play a key role in influencing organizational culture about the important role of African women scientists. Many mentors report that they are becoming better leaders as a result of experience gained through AWARD.
THE AWARD DIFFERENCE
AWARD offers a unique, well-tested career-development program. Fellows stay in their institutions and continue their research during the two-year fellowship, which includes:
Fostering Mentoring Partnerships
Building Science Skills
Developing Leadership Capacity
AWARD is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), and the Agropolis Fondation. AWARD is a preferred service provider of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), and is hosted by the World Agroforestry Centre.
We are also grateful for the many national, regional, and international research institutions, private corporations, and other organizations that have provided in-kind support.
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