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African Diaspora Mathematicians Program (ADMP)

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+++ This program is currently closed++++

Every year, thousands of scientists migrate from developing countries in search of educational opportunities and better intellectual environments. Some of these individuals acquire singular expertise and find themselves engaged in universities, research laboratories and international organizations outside their original countries. There are reasons to believe that, given an opportunity, many of these individuals would be willing to share their expertise with scientists and students in developing countries. 

For instance, a number of Diaspora mathematicians have been involved in activities that include: conference organization, training schools, teaching and supervision of postgraduate students, which have been undertaken largely through the personal drive and interest of the individuals involved. These activities are necessary because many universities in Africa have a limited number of mathematics lecturers and consequently have to rely on visiting staff to help cover various areas of mathematics, particularly at the advanced level.

The Commission for Developing Countries (CDC), a commission of the International Mathematical Union (IMU), wishes to tap the expertise of Diaspora mathematicians, in a more formal manner, in order to provide additional staff and support to mathematics departments.

The Program ran as a pilot program in Africa for two years (May 2017 - June 2019) and involved a total of three partnerships, thus giving rise to the name African Diaspora Mathematicians Program (ADMP).

Depending on the success of ADMP, the CDC will decide whether to expand the Program in Africa and extend it to other regions of the Developing World. This program is partially supported by the Niels Henrik Abel Board.

Objective of ADMP

The objective of the ADMP was to strengthen appreciation and understanding of mathematics, particularly at the postgraduate level, by utilising the expertise of African Diaspora mathematicians, whilst at the same time encouraging collaboration in research by mathematicians in Africa and those in the African Diaspora, through the partnerships established in the Program.

Who can participate?

  • Mathematicians with a PhD who were born and raised in Africa and were now full-time employed outside of Africa as professors in mathematics.

  • Mathematics academic units at any university in Africa who wanted to build long term connections with African Diaspora Mathematicians and hopefully the home institution of the Diaspora Mathematician.

How were partnerships established?

Before a proposal was made for a partnership there must be prior consultation and mutual agreement between the African Diaspora mathematician and the appropriate university or institutions in Africa. It was inteded that the established partnerships would result in longer-term contact, mentoring and collaboration. During the trial stage, a total of three (3) partnerships (involving one (1) African Diaspora Mathematician and one host institution per partnership) was be established. 

What activities were undertaken through the partnerships?

The African Diaspora mathematician visited the partner university in Africa, once a year for 3 – 6 weeks in order to undertake the following activities, among others:

  • Postgraduate (starting from Master level) teaching and examination
  • Postgraduate supervision
  • Curriculum design or improvement
  • Research collaboration
  • Mentorship of young staff members and postgraduate students
  • Advice on acquisition of software, literature and other educational materials
  • Exploring the possibility of establishing a formal link between the host university and the African Diaspora’s home university or other universities
  • Deliver public talks to general public on the potential of mathematics and STEM for development

Funding

Three partnerships were funded for two years, with each partnership granted 7,000 EUR annually to be used as follows (subject to the monetary policies of the IMU):

  • The African Diaspora mathematicians received up to 6,000 EUR(based on invoices) to cover airfare, travel insurance, visa processing and living expenses for 3 to 6 weeks at the host university in Africa.

  • The African Diaspora mathematician were granted 1,000 EUR per year (based on invoices), to acquire educational material such as books, software, journals and other learning material, to be left to the host institution.

Application for ADMP

The three partnerships for the pilot period were selected in spring 2017. 

The application for ADMP had to be submitted online and via e-mail by the African Diaspora mathematician, after appropriate consultation and in agreement with the host institution.

Currently there is no call for applications for this program.

Application Procedure:

Step 1) The African Diaspora Mathematician had to fill out and submit the online application form which was open from October 1, 2016 to January 31, 2017 on this website.

Step 2) The African Diaspora Mathematician had to send an email to the ADMP Administrator which contained the following three (3) documents in PDF:

  1. letter -pdf only- from the Vice-Chancellor of the host institution affirming that the proposed partnership had been discussed with the host institution and confirming support for the partnership and activities.
  2. A letter -pdf only-from the Vice-Chancellor of the home university of the African Diaspora mathematician affirming awareness of the Program and giving permission for the participation of the African Diaspora mathematician. 
  3. A recent CV -pdf only- of the Africa Diaspora mathematician- maximum 5 pages - which included a list of most recent five publications.

All documents must be sent via email to CDC.ADMP.Administrator@mathunion.org

Application Deadline for all data and documents was 31st January 2017.

The ADMP selection committee reviewed the applications in February 2017 and the ADMP administrator contacted the African Diaspora Mathemartician in case of further requested data and once a decision had been taken.

When will the partnerships start to operate?

Taking into consideration the time required to process the applications, it was anticipated that successful partnerships would be announced in March 2017 and the operations to start from May or June 2017, depending on the preparedness of the partners.

Evaluation of the partnerships

At the end of the 2 years, the partnerships was evaluated by the ADMP and CDC and their success was measured by the following outputs:

  1. Number of courses taught and examined;
  2. Number of postgraduate students taught or supervised;
  3. New curricula designed or improvements made in existing curricula;
  4. Research collaborations initiated;
  5. Mentorships established;
  6. Number of students or staff exchanges between the two universities;
  7. Number of publications produced or preprints submitted for publication in collaboration with researchers in the host university;
  8. Software, literature and learning material acquired;
  9. Progress made in establishing formal links between the host institution;
  10. Number of outreach activities to the public and other universities.

ADMP Committee

The CDC established the ADMP Committee which had oversight on all aspects of the program and submited its recommendations to the CDC accordingly.

ADMP Administration and Contact

In 2017 ADMP was administered by the African Mathematics Millennium Science Initiative (AMMSI) based in Kenya on behalf of CDC which covered the administrative costs. Since November 2017 the program was administrated by the IMU Secretariat in Berlin, Germany.

For further details and inquiries, contact the CDC Grants Administration in the IMU Secretariat in Berlin via: