There is a severe shortage of opportunities for junior and mid-career researchers to acquire and develop clinical research skills in sub-Saharan Africa. Increased possibilities for individual training would enable talented scientists to establish themselves as independent researchers and team leaders at host institutions in sub-Saharan Africa.
The purpose of this Call for Proposals is to provide funding to actions that aim to support junior to mid-career researchers (“fellows”) to train and develop their clinical research skills.
The objectives are:
The proposed action should specifically enhance the ability of the fellow to design, plan and execute clinical biomedical and/or social science/ethics research projects within the scope of the EDCTP2 programme(1). The proposed training should include an independent research activity and a clear description of the skills that will be acquired by carrying out the research. Fellows with training activities involving clinical trials and related studies must ensure that studies are appropriately designed and good clinical practice (GCP)-compliant and that good manufacturing practice (GMP)-compliant investigational product(s) are available and guaranteed, and all sponsor responsibilities can be fulfilled by the host organisation (applicant legal entity where the fellow is employed) or product developer involved in the project. Individuals targeted by this Call for Proposals should have a track record of publications in peer-reviewed journals in their chosen area of research, a mentor who is an internationally recognised scientific leader working in sub-Saharan Africa, and a career development plan as part of the research proposal.
Application for an EDCTP Career Development Fellowship must be submitted by the prospective fellow in conjunction with and on behalf of their proposed host organisation (‘the applicant legal entity’). The grants are awarded to the host organisation with the explicit commitment that this organisation offers appropriate conditions for the fellow to direct and manage its funding for the duration of the fellowship.
Activities funded under this Call for Proposals will promote career progression, encourage entry and re-integration of African scientists trained abroad, and ensure the retention of postdoctoral and postgraduate researchers in their respective research fields and that the researchers develop into independent researchers and team leaders in sub-Saharan Africa. The progressive generation of independent researchers, re-entry of ones trained abroad and retention of those working in sub-Saharan Africa will ultimately contribute to creation of a critical mass of internationally recognised scientific leaders, institutions and networks that will sustain high quality research in sub-Saharan Africa. The career development fellowship grants will also contribute to reduce and reverse the brain drain of African scientist that moved out of or trained outside Africa by offering an opportunity to return to Africa and progress their career to establish themselves as independent researchers, thereby empowering them to assume a leadership role in clinical research and contributing to sustainable development.
Procedure and application process
Submission and evaluation procedure
This is a single-stage application procedure. Proposals must be submitted by 28 February 2017 via EDCTPgrants. Applicants will be notified of the outcome by 7 July 2017.
The host organisation (applicant) must provide a support letter confirming that the organisation is supportive of the proposed action and willing through its financial and administrative systems to enable the fellow to direct independently the proposed action and manage its funding for the duration of the fellowship.
Evaluation criteria, scoring and thresholds
Following an admissibility and eligibility check, letters of intent and full proposals are evaluated by external, independent experts. Proposals are evaluated according to the criteria Excellence, Impact and Implementation. Each criterion is scored between 0 and 5.
The following aspects are considered under the evaluation criteria:
3. Quality and efficiency of the implementation
The call budget is 2.1 million EUR.
The maximum fellowship duration shall be 36 months and the requested EDCTP contribution should not exceed 150,000 EUR. The funding level is 100% of eligible costs.
The legal entity employing the successful fellow (‘host organisation’) is required to sign a grant agreement with EDCTP (EDCTP2 mono-beneficiary grant agreement with options for fellowships) within three months of receipt of the conditional award letter.