Supporting doctoral networks between Africa and Europe
On 30 August, African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) and The Guild organised an info session on the MSCA Doctoral Networks funding scheme. With the call for 2022 currently ongoing, the event provided practical insights from the European Commission and previous grant holders on how to set up successful applications.
The info session brought together over 120 participants across Africa and Europe, offering an opportunity for researchers and support staff from ARUA and The Guild to connect with peers interested in the open call and in establishing partnerships between African and European universities.
Walking the participants through the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Doctoral Networks scheme, Laurence Marrama-Rakotoarivony, Administrator - Research Programme Manager at the European Research Executive Agency, provided details about the eligibility criteria and responded to many practical questions from the participants.
The event was also joined by Lotte Meinert, Professor at Aarhus University, and Bruce Talbot, Professor at Stellenbosch University, who shared their experience in applying and taking part in the predecessor programme of the Doctoral Networks. Highlighting best practices in setting up an application, Meinert and Talbot also openly discussed the key advantages and challenges in implementing doctoral programmes between European and African partners.
Both speakers from the academic community stressed the opportunities presented through Horizon Europe, of including African researchers as full project partners. This was, they agreed, a critical opportunity for developing equitable science relations. Moreover, they also emphasised the importance of not being discouraged by a failure marginally to secure a grant the first time, but to respond carefully to the evaluators’ comments and re-submit.
The info session was organised part of ARUA’s and The Guild’s continued initiatives to foster, in practice, science collaboration between the two continents. You can read about our joint calls and watch recordings of past events here.
6 September 2022