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scientifiques africains
APTI scholarships for African scientists

Do you belong to a group of talented early-career African scientists who want to train abroad and return to their home institutions to become scientific leaders in their communities, help solve Africa's global health and development challenges and become trainers for the next generation? If so, the African Postdoctoral Training Initiative (APTI) has an opportunity for you.

APTI is implemented by the African Academy of Sciences (AAS) in partnership with the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF). Through the programme, APTI fellows are trained and supported to become scientific leaders capable of advocating for increased research and innovation projects in Africa. This is achieved through 4-year postdoctoral fellowships where APTI fellows are placed in various laboratories of NIH institutes or centres (i.e. the intramural research programme) for 2 years before returning to their home institutions in Africa for a further 2 years of research.


Deadline: 30 September 2022

Name of donor : The African Academy of Sciences

Amount of the grant : 10,000 $ to 100,000 $

Category: Exchange

Reference URL 

Area(s) of interest


African scientific fields of intervention 

APTI fellowships are open to applications from fields of health research, with a focus on innovation aimed at the discovery and translation of transformative solutions to global health problems that are priorities for their home institutions and countries. In addition, proposals must align with the BMGF, NIH and AAS focus areas. In this regard, specific areas of focus include:

  • Human immunobiology; host-pathogen biology (human); discovery of vaccines and biological products
  • Discovery of medicines: malaria, tuberculosis, pandemic viruses, contraception
  • Microbiome research
  • Genomics: human, pathogen, microbiome
  • Gene-based remedies for HIV and sickle cell disease
  • HIV, tuberculosis, malaria, neglected tropical diseases, enteric and diarrhoeal diseases, pneumonia
  • Women's sexual and reproductive health
  • Vector biology and control (for malaria, neglected tropical diseases and arboviruses)
  • Maternal, newborn and child health, the latter including nutrition, growth and neurological development
  • Data science, regulatory science
  • Epidemic preparedness: molecular surveillance, clinical trial networks
Information on funding for African scientists 
  • Years 1 and 2
    • During the first two years of the fellowship at the NIH, APTI fellows will be engaged as a postdoctoral fellow under the NIH Visiting Fellows Intramural (VFP) programme.
  • Years 3 and 4
    • Upon successful completion of the two-year postdoctoral fellowship at NIH, APTI fellows will be supported to become independent investigators as follows. APTI fellows will receive a grant of up to $226,800 to support years 3 and 4 of the APTI fellowship, as detailed:
    • Salary support up to USD 38,400 per year, subject to the HR provisions of the home institution. Salary support is designed to ensure that APTI fellows devote at least 50 % of their working time to their APTI fellowship.
    • Support for research up to USD 50,000 per year
    • Help with the purchase of equipment up to USD 50,000 (total)
Eligibility criteria African scientists 

Eligible applications for APTI grants must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be a citizen of an African country, currently employed in an academic, research or government position in an African country
  • Must have a relevant PhD (e.g. PhD, MD, MBBS) awarded no more than 7 years prior to the application deadline. Applicants whose doctoral degrees were awarded earlier may be considered on a case-by-case basis subject to justification (e.g. where there has been a career break for family reasons or to seek asylum due to political instability). Such applicants must submit an application (with justification) for consideration
  • Must have less than 5 years of relevant post-doctoral research experience at their start date at the NIH. Brief periods of clinical and/or teaching work, which does not include research, may be allowed, but may not exceed 2-3 years in total.
  • Must be fluent in English - reading, writing, speaking and listening.

For more information, please visit the African Academy of Sciences.

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