The Africa Oxford Initiative (AfOx), in association with St Edmund Hall, Christ Church College and St. Peter’s College seeks to appoint up to three visiting Fellows from African universities and research institutions to foster research or teaching in any field of study, and to assist collaborations between the University of Oxford and the individual appointed.
The Fellowship is for a duration of 4 to 6 weeks, to be taken up anytime from September 2017.
The Fellows appointed will be provided with an en-suite, single occupancy study bedroom with all meals provided in the Senior Common Room, temporary membership of which will be granted for the period of residency. The fellowship will also include airfare, visa fee and a maintenance allowance for incidental expenses.
Academics working in any African institution are eligible. Applicants can have existing collaborations with the Oxford academics or have the intention to establish long-term relationships with the Departments or Colleges at Oxford.
Applications should include a personal statement outlining the reasons for the collaboration and the activities to be undertaken during the residency as well as a short CV of the AfOx Visiting Fellow.
Ndjodi M.L Ndeunyema, a Namibian MPhil Law candidate at Linacre College has been elected president of the Oxford University Africa Society for the 2017/18 academic year.
The Oxford University Africa Society (Afrisoc) is an official student club of the University of Oxford (registered through the Proctor‘s Office on an annual basis) with Prof. Dr. Raufu Mustapha, Associate Professor at the Department for International Development (Queen Elizabeth House) as its patron. It has focused on African affairs at the University of Oxford for over 50 years.
Past presidents include Rutendo Chigora, Melvyn Lubega and Dr Sebabatso Manoeli.
Ndjodi will proceed with a DPhil in Law at Oxford this winter – Michaelmas term. As president of Afrisoc, Ndjodi aims to realise the FOUR E pillars as reflected in his election manifesto for the Society.
Entrench: this is to ensure that the Society has a coherent legal framework that can be carried down to future Committees. Entrance: to increase opportunities for Africans to enter and access an Oxford education through by working together with key University stakeholders. Experience: to ensure that the Society’s membership has a positive intellectual and social experience as well as working towards any concerns of mental illness that may arise. Engage: The Society will build upon efforts to engage with Africa and African issues whilst in Oxford.
Ndjodi is grateful to previous Africa Society Committees which have worked tirelessly in cementing the Society and looks forward to the building upon this legacy.
Zeinab Badawi delves into the history of Africa for a brand new, nine-part series on BBC World News. The continent of Africa has a long, complex history, and its people built civilizations which rivalled those that existed anywhere else in the world. However, much of the continent’s history is not widely known, and what we are presented with often projects a distorted and partial picture. Sudan-born Zeinab travels to all four corners of Africa, interviewing African historians, archaeologists, and citizens whose accounts and stories paint a vivid picture of their continent’s past and how it informs their present lives. It is a series that will inform, educate and entertain – Africa’s history told by Africans themselves.
Episode 1: Mother Africa.
In the first episode Zeinab Badawi travels across the continent, examining the origins of humankind and how and why we evolved in Africa. During her journey Zeinab is granted rare access to the genuine bones of one of the most iconic discoveries in the field of palaeontology: Lucy in Ethiopia, or as she is known in Amharic ‘Dinkenesh’ – which means ‘you are marvellous’! Zeinab also spends time with a unique tribe in Tanzania, who provide insight into how we have lived, for most of our history, as hunter-gatherers. She also looks at what distinguishes us from the animal world and makes us human. Transmission Times: Sat 1st July 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 2nd July 09:10, 21:10
Episode 2: Cattle, crops and Iron.
Zeinab Badawi continues her journey through the history of human development, travelling to meet the Masai of East Africa where she explains how humans began to domesticate animals and become pastoralists; in Zimbabwe, Zeinab visits one lively farming family and examines how we became settled and began to live from farming. She also looks at how the Iron Age transformed life in Africa and paved the way for the development of rich urban civilisations. Transmission Times: Sat 8th July 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 9th July 09:10, 21:10
Episode 3: Gift of the Nile.
Zeinab Badawi’s quest to uncover the history of Africa takes her to Egypt, where she explores the most famous civilisation on the continent – the ancient Egyptians. Zeinab takes you beyond the usual coverage of the pharaohs and asks first who the ancient Egyptians actually were? What was their ethnicity? What made such a great civilisation possible? How did they order their society, and what were their values? Transmission Times: Sat 15th July 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 16th July 09:10, 21:10
Episode 4: The Kingdom of Kush.
In the fourth episode, Zeinab Badawi travels to the country of her birth and the very region of her forefathers: northern Sudan, where she sheds light on a little know aspect of ancient African history: the Kingdom of Kush. Its kings ruled for many hundreds of years and indeed in the eighth century BC, they conquered and governed Egypt for the best part of 100 years. Furthermore Kush was an African superpower, its influence extended to the modern day Middle East. Zeinab shows you some of the best preserved of Sudan’s s 1,000 pyramids and explains how some of the customs of Kush have endured to this day. Transmission Times: Sat 22nd July 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 23rd July 09:10, 21:10
Episode 5: The Rise of Aksum.
Zeinab Badawi travels to the little visited country of Eritrea and neighbouring Ethiopia, to chart the rise of the Kingdom of Aksum. Described as one of the four greatest civilisations of the ancient world, Zeinab examines archaeological remains in both countries dating from many hundreds of years before Christ. She explains how the Kings of Aksum grew rich and powerful from their control of the Red Sea trade and how they were one of the first civilisations that officially embraced Christianity in the 4th century. Also find out why the Queen of Sheba and the Sacred Ark of the Covenant are so critical to the story of Aksum. Transmission Times: Sat 29th July 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 30th July 09:10, 21:10
Episode 6: Kings and Emirs.
In the sixth episode, Zeinab Badawi focuses on the fall of the kingdom of Aksum, and how the Christian kings that followed in Aksum’s wake left powerful legacies, especially that of King Lalibela. He is credited with building a complex of rock-hewn churches, which represent amazing feats of engineering. She also charts the arrival of Islam in this part of Africa and how the Christian kings and Muslim emirs co-existed. In the most Muslim of Ethiopia’s cities Harar: she observes the bizarre, long standing tradition of the Hyena Men of Harar. Transmission Times: Sat 5th Aug 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 6th Aug 09:10, 21:10
Episode 7: North Africa.
In this episode, Zeinab Badawi’s exploration of Africa’s rich history focuses on North Africa. She goes to Morocco to find out about the original inhabitants of the region – in particular the Berbers or Amazigh – the best known of the people of North Africa. Zeinab visits Carthage in Tunisia and explains who the Carthaginians were. She looks at the great Berber kings and how they managed to retain their influence when North Africa came under Roman rule. Zeinab shows you some of the most extensive and least visited Roman sites in Algeria. Transmission Times: Sat 12th Aug 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 13th Aug 09:10, 21:10
Episode 8: Ancestors, Spirits and religion.
In this episode, Zeinab Badawi examines religion in Africa. First the enduring presence of Africa’s indigenous ancestral religions, which millions of people on the continent still adhere to. She travels to Zimbabwe to find out more about a remote community that follows traditional African religion. In Senegal she meets a Muslim man who blends Islamic beliefs with his ancestral ones. She also charts the impact of Judaism and early Christianity in Africa and how Africans in particular made significant contributions to Christian thinking and practice. Transmission Times: Sat 19th Aug 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 20th Aug 09:10, 21:10
Episode 9: Islam in Africa.
In the final episode Zeinab Badawi travels to several countries and looks at the early spread of Islam in Africa and how many Africans practise to this day a mystic, Sufi form of the religion. She shows how Arab culture came to influence a large part of the continent – particularly in the north. And she charts the rise of the powerful Islamic dynasties of North Africa, that built magnificent monuments, mosques and empires – including a part of southern Europe. Transmission Times: Sat 26th Aug 02:10 (Except North and Latin America), 15:10. Sun 27th Aug 09:10, 21:10
The African Academy of Sciences has inaugurated a new Governing Council. The council will be led by Professor Felix Dapare Dakora, President of the Academy for a 3-year term running from 2017-2020. Prof Dakora replaces Prof Aderemi Kuku, a Nigeria-born mathematician who was President from 2014 to 2017.
The new President is a Professor of plant and soil biotechnology at South Africa’s Tshwane University of Technology; a recipient of the UNESCO-Equatorial Guinea International Prize for Research in the Life Sciences and the African Union Kwame Nkrumah Scientific Award; and a Fellow of the Academy of Science of South Africa. “This new leadership will steer the Academy to even greater heights in its mission of developing science, technology and innovation in Africa,” said AAS Interim Executive Director Dr Thomas Kariuki. “We will work with them to elevate the Academy and to contribute to Africa’s development.”
Prof Dakora said: “I am honoured to have been elected as President and look forward to working with the Secretariat and Fellows to drive the agenda of the Academy and science in Africa forward. “It will take our collective efforts to ensure that science is harnessed to improve the lives of Africa’s people and contributes to socio-economic development.”
The 15-member Governing Council is made up of 7 new members, 4 re-elected members, a member elected to a new post, the immediate past president, and the Executive Director as an ex-officio member and will serve a 3 year term. The Council meets twice a year and are tasked with policy oversight, formulating and reviewing the programmes of the Academy within the framework and priorities set by the AAS General Assembly of Fellows. The GC receives and approves the annual reports and audited financial accounts of the Academy; and identifies, approves and inducts new members into the fellowship of the Academy.
The Governing Council comprises:
President Elect: Felix Dapare Dakora (Plant and Soil Biotechnology Professor at the Tshwane University of Technology in Pretoria, South Africa) Secretary General: Barthelemy Nyasse (Chemistry and Research Methodology Professor at the University of Yaoundé I, Cameroon) Treasurer: Dominic W. Makawiti (Biochemistry Professor at the University of Nairobi, Kenya)
Aderemi Kuku (Distinguished Professor of Mathematics, National Mathematical Centre, Abuja, Nigeria) will sit in the Governing Council as immediate Past President
Vice President East Africa: Elly Sabiiti (Crop Sciences Professor at the Makerere University, Uganda) Vice President Central Africa: Vincent P.K Titanji (Vice Chancellor and CEO of the Cameroon Christian University, Cameroon) Vice President North Africa: Mahmoud Abdel-Aty (Head of the Mathematics Department at the Zewail City of Sciences and Technology, Egypt) Vice President West Africa: Robert Guiguemdé (President of the National Academy of Sciences of Burkina Faso) Vice President Southern Africa: Boitumelo Kgarebe ( Head of the Analytical Services Division at the National Institute for Occupational Health (NIOH), South Africa)
Regional Rep Central Africa: Juma Shabani (Professor of Theoretical and Mathematical Physics, University of Burundi) Regional Rep East Africa: Theonest K. Mutabingwa (Professor, Department of Community Medicine, Hubert Kairuki Memorial University, Dar-es-Salaam) Regional Rep North Africa: Akissa Bahri (Professor at the National Agricultural Institute of Tunisia) Regional Rep West Africa: Richard Awuah (Professor plant pathology Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana) Regional Rep Southern Africa: Colleen Masimirembwa (Founding President and Chief Scientific Officer African Institute of Biomedical Science & Technology (AiBST) Wilkins Hospital, Zimbabwe)
Associate Professor Lucie Cluver of the Centre for Evidence-Based Intervention at the Department of Social Policy and Intervention has been awarded a Philip Leverhulme Prize.
Philip Leverhulme Prizes have been offered since 2001 and recognise the achievement of outstanding researchers whose work has already attracted international recognition and whose future career is exceptionally promising. Every year the prize scheme makes up to thirty awards of £100,000, across a range of academic disciplines.
AfOx Steering Committee Member Professor Charles Godfray has been knighted for his services to scientific research and for scientific advice to government. Prof Godfray,FRS, Hope Professor of Zoology, is the Director of the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food, and a Fellow of Jesus College.
Professor Godfray is a population biologist whose work involves ecology, evolution, epidemiology, and the interplay between science and policy in the areas of environment and food security. He is part of Target Malaria, a multi-university consortium of researchers working on the control of the mosquitoes that transmit malaria in Africa.
He is Chair of Defra’s Science Advisory Council, a Trustee Director of Rothamsted Research and a trustee of the Food Foundation, and sits on a number of other scientific advisory committees. His previous roles include Trustee of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, President of the British Ecological Society, and Chair of the Lead Expert Group of the UK Government’s Foresight Project on the Future of Food and Farming.
More than one thousand people were recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2017 list which recognises the achievements of a wide range of extraordinary people from across the UK.
Bryan A Stevenson is a lawyer and social justice activist who has campaigned for fair treatment of children and minorities in the US criminal justice system. He is the founder and Executive Director of the Equal Justice Initiative, which provides legal representation to those who may have been denied a fair trial. He has been awarded the Olaf Palme Prize for international human rights, the Gruber Justice Prize and the Four Freedoms Award.
On 21st June 2017, Mr Stevenson will be awarded a Doctor of Civil Law, honoris causa at Encaenia, the University of Oxford’s annual honorary degree ceremony.
Bryan Stevenson graduated from Harvard University in 1985 with both a Master’s in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government and a JD from the School of Law. His 2012 TED talk, “We need to talk about an injustice”, is said to hold the record for the longest standing ovation given to any TED speaker (Adams, 2015).
“Among other things, he is currently working to establish The Memorial to Peace and Justice in Montgomery, which will document each of the nearly 4,000 lynchings of black people that took place in the twelve states of the South from 1877 to 1950. He believes that the history of lynchings has influenced the subsequent high rate of death sentences in the South, where it has been disproportionately applied to minorities.”
The Oxford Africa Conference is the leading interdisciplinary conference on Africa delivered by a team of Oxford students. It brings together Heads of State, policymakers, business leaders, academics, artists, students, and professional to critically expand the discourse on Africa. The conference has been running for seven years now and serves as a vibrant platform for new thinking about a global Africa across all disciplines – politics, society, business, technology and academia – connecting inter-generational leaders from around the world to shape an integrated and innovative perspective on Africa’s future.
This years theme is Breaking the frame[works]: Redefining Africa’s geopolitical, economic and cultural influence today
Through this theme, the 2017 Oxford Africa Conference questions the lens through which the continent has been viewed by providing a platform to redefine Africa’s geopolitical, economic and cultural identity in the 21st century.
On 19th and 20th May, high profile speakers from the political arena, experts with cutting edge approaches to development, talented African artists and participants from all over the world will come together for a conference that will truly reframe and redefine leadership, entrepreneurship and overall success, on African terms. With diversity, a wealth of experiences, and the determination to shape its own future, Africa is breaking the frame.
Dr. Anne Makena, Program Coordinator of the Africa Oxford Initiative said: “AfOx is proud to sponsor this conference as it fosters Africa – Oxford networking and collaboration. We are delighted to welcome renowned speakers, entrepreneurs, researchers and students to Oxford to discuss issues relevant to the African continent. Having been a student here myself, I recognise the amount of time and the great effort it takes for students to take on the organisation of an event of this scale, and AfOx is very happy to support them.”
Previous conferences have had speakers such as John Mahama, former president of The Republic of Ghana, Bring Back Our Girls Activist and Transparency International co-founder Obiageli Ezekweseli, and undercover journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas.
The new portraits up around the university include a painting of AfOx Steering Committee member Prof Patricia Daley, Zambian-born British bobsledder Henry Odili Nwume, South African human rights activist Kumi Naidoo and British-Nigerian novelist Diran Adebayo