WARA’s Latest


WARA Fellowship Applications


Applications for the 2018 WARA Fellowship competition are now open! Click here to apply! The submission deadline is February 1, 2018.

WARA fellowships funded by a grant from the Educational and Cultural Affairs bureau of the US Department of State through Council of American Overseas Research Centers make it possible for a broad range of educators and students to experience professional exchanges and carry out research projects in West Africa.

The WARA Pre-Doctoral Fellowship is open to U.S. citizens who are currently enrolled in graduate programs at institutions of higher education in the United States to conduct research in West Africa during the summer of 2018.

The WARA Post-Doctoral Fellowship is open to U.S citizens already holding a Ph.D. who are currently affiliated with an academic institution or who work in another related domain and would like to conduct research in West Africa.

The WARC Library Fellowship is designed to provide experience in West Africa for practicing librarians and for the next generation of Africana librarians. Open to U.S citizens, this fellowship provides round trip travel to Dakar and a stipend of $2,500 to cover the cost of living during the summer of 2018.

The WARA Residency Fellowship offers residencies for WARA member institutions to host a West African Scholar on their campus.


Logos with MCF for Announcement2

Ideas Matter Research Fellowships for West African Scholars

The West African Research Association, in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, is pleased to announce awardees for the Ideas Matter Fellowship Program. This is the second year of this fellowship, which supports the work of doctoral students whose dissertation research focuses on women, technology or entrepreneurship and who are based in West African institutions. In this second competition, we received 65 eligible applications from graduate students representing ten West African countries and fields as diverse as biology, agronomy, political science, medicine, public health, chemistry, and pharmacy. Their research seeks to solve many of the most trenchant health and economic challenges facing Africa today. This year, we received a larger number of Anglophone to francophone applicants. Nearly half of the applicants this time around were young women, a 16% increase from last year, attesting to the growing role of women in science and technology. The three candidates selected from this rich trove of applications are:


Mrs. Isata Kamanda (Sierra Leone, Agricultural Research Institute) Crop Improvement

Involving women in participatory selection of biofortified cassava germplasm in Sierra Leone

According to the W.H.O., more than 40% of pregnant women, lactating mothers and preschool children have moderate to severe Vitamin A Deficiency (VAD), despite efforts the government has made to import other vitamin sources, which have proven ineffective and unsustainable. Cassava (also known as manioc), is a popular food staple in Sierra Leone, and biofortified germplasm offer a potential solution to VAD. Mrs. Kamanda’s research will investigate a means to popularize biofortified cassava by involving rural women in the selection process of favorable biofortified cassava germplasm.


Ms. Amoin Gervaise Kouame (Côte d’Ivoire, University Nangui Abrogoua) Natural Sciences

Menopause in Côte d’Ivoire: knowledge of traditional methods of treatment and evaluation of their efficiency

Over 22% of women over 40 years of age experience problems from menopause, including cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis. Current hormonal treatments are expensive and cause negative side effects. Ms. Kouame’s research will determine and test local Ivorian plants rich in phytoestrogen, which is an effective treatment against the health complications of menopause.


Mr. Yao Manu Seshie (Burkina Faso, Fondation 2iE) Electric, Energy, and Industrial Engineering

Experimental studies of the solar concentration plant CSP4Africa

The ORC turbine machine is utilized in solar plants to transform heat to electricity. Currently, it is only available through a specialized enterprise. It is essential to allowing the utilization of solar energy. Mr, Seshie’s research aims to test different the ORC machine in different dimensions with the goal of creating a smaller, more efficient, and more affordable model that will allow solar energy to be more accessible to lower income populations throughout West Africa.


The Ideas Matter Fellowship Program reflects WARA and the Mastercard Foundation’s commitment to increasing opportunities for emerging West African scholars who are transforming ideas into active solutions to the challenges facing the region and the world at large.



Read all about it!

The long-awaited release of WARA’s 2016-2017 Newsletter is now here! This issue’s theme was “Religion in West Africa,” featuring work from WARA board members, guest lecturers, and grantees. Included also are updates on WARA and changes this year. Happy reading!

Click the “Fullscreen” button in the middle of the image above for the full experience.



WARC Travel Grant

Applications for the Fall 2017 competition are now closed! Please stand by for final decisions in coming months.

Funding for the WARC Travel Grant Program is provided by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the US Department of State through a grant from the Council of American Overseas Research Centers.



Check out this video from WARA Residency Fellow, Ms. Valerie Delali Adjoh-Davoh, summer 2017.

We had the chance to meet with Ms. Adjoh-Davoh as she visited WARA’s Boston office this past July during her residency at Harvard University. In this video, she discusses her fellowship and her compelling research on child labor in Ghana.

Left to right: WARA Operations Manager Caroline Johnson, WARA Residency Fellow Valerie Delalli Adjoh-Davoh, and former US WARA Director Dr. Jennifer Yanco

Left to right:
WARA Operations Manager Caroline Johnson, WARA Residency Fellow Valerie Delalli Adjoh-Davoh, and former US WARA Director Dr. Jennifer Yanco


Check out this video of first-hand accounts from a few of our former grantees!


  • Koffi Yao Bernard (Université Nangui-Abrogoua-Abidjan), recipient of the Fall 2015 WARC Travel Grant,  for research in Senegal: “Etude de la communauté microbienne (biomasse microbienne, activité des micro-organismes et diversité microbienne) dans les sols amendés avec les déjections animales pour une production rizicole et maraîchère durable en Côte d’Ivoire” His research is on the microbial community in soil modified with animal waste for sustainable rice and market gardening in Côte d’Ivoire.
  • Nikiema Muhamadi (UFR/SVT Universite de Ouagadougou,Burkina Faso), recipient of the Spring 2016 WARC Travel Grant, for travel to Benin to work with specialists on methanization. His research project is on the methanization/anaerobic digestion of municipal waste.
  • Jau-Yon Chen (African Studies, Howard University), recipient of the 2017 Pre-Doctoral WARA Fellowship, for her research: “Migration as a Strategy of Development: The Case of Senegal”


Check out this video from former WARA Board President Leonardo Villalon on the Sahel Research Group at U of Florida and its collaboration with the Sahel West Africa Club!

We congratulate Dr. Villalon for his appointment to Director of the Board of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers!



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Scholar Rescue Fund

Do you know colleagues or friends whose academic work puts them or their families at risk? Please let them know about Scholar Rescue Fund, a program that enables scholars to pursue their work in safety and to continue to share their knowledge. The Scholar Rescue Fund has awarded IIE-SRF fellowships to 681 scholars from 56 countries, placing them at over 360 host partner institutions in 41 countries around the world. For nearly 10 years, WARC has served as a host institution for the Scholar Rescue Fund.