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Centers of excellence in Africa

Research on food security in Kenya: training researchers

KATE HOLT / AFRICA PRACTICEResearch on food security in Kenya: training researchersKATE HOLT / AFRICA PRACTICE

The World Bank will allocate $150 million to fund 19 centers of excellence at African universities. The resources will support research in engineering, mathematics, agriculture and health. The project, called Africa Centers of Excellence, will train young African researchers, placing them into contact with new scientific procedures and techniques. The money will be transferred to the governments of seven countries, including Nigeria, which will receive $70 million, Senegal ($16 million), and The Gambia, which will also receive a credit of $3 million intended for undergraduate education and technical courses. The percentage of researchers in the African population is low. Burkina Faso, for example, has 45 researchers for every million people. In Nigeria, the number is 38, while the average in Latin America is 481, and in Asia, 1,714. According to the website SciDev.Net, the World Bank has also partnered with the Nordic Development Fund (NDF), which includes Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, to support projects to solve climatic and environmental problems in Africa.