WAI Director General takes part in the BMBF International Evaluation Panel, 11-12 September 2017, Bonn, Germany

BMBF pictu8re Bonn Project Evaluation CopyAt the invitation of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung - BMBF), the Director General of the West Africa Institute (WAI), Prof. Djénéba Traoré took part as member in the BMBF international panel in charge of selecting the best collaboration proposal in the field of human and social sciences between Germany and one Subsaharan African country.

Background: In 2012, the BMBF launched the ‘Framework Programme for the Humanities, Cultural Sciences and Social Sciences’. One of the major objectives of the Framework Programme is to foster the internationalisation of the humanities and social sciences and to give researchers greater freedom to develop their work across the borders of countries and disciplines. A core element of the internationalisation are the ‘International Centres for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences’ (‘Maria Sibylla Merian Centres’). The Centres will enable researchers to study specific issues from various disciplinary perspectives within a closely cooperating group based outside Europe.

According to the BMBF, strengthening research cooperation between 
Germany and the selected African country in the field of the humanities and social sciences will stable ties between researchers in both regions. Thus, experts from both countries will work together as partners and in an intercultural dialogue.

In response to the BMBF call for proposals, five consortia of applicants submitted their applications for funding of a preliminary phase of an International Centre for Advanced Studies; three for a Centre in South Africa, one for a Centre in Cameroon and Ghana.

The proposals have been evaluated on September 11th and 12th, 2017 in the BMBF Headquarters in Bonn by an external panel of international experts on the basis of reviews, internal discussions, and a hearing.

The evaluation panel consisted of:

Two peer reviewers per proposal for the evaluation of the research topic and programme of the proposed International Centre,

Two peer reviewers for the evaluation of all the five proposals from a comparative perspective with regard to questions of organisation and feasibility,

Experts on science and academia in Subsaharan-Africa from the Humboldt Foundation, DFG, DAAD and DLR.

 At the end of the two-day-workshop, the panel agreed to  select one project. The BMBF will publish the name of the unanimously selected consortium after the complete validation process.


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