Africa Science Leadership Programme (ASLP) Steering Committee has appointed Uganda’s Dr Connie Nshemereirwe as the new Director of the programme, taking over from the founding Director, Prof Bernard Slippers.
A key aspiration of the ASLP from the beginning has been to gradually hand over the ownership of the programme to the fellows. This is embedded in the practice of inviting fellows from previous cohorts to act as mentors in the proceeding cohorts, as well as supporting fellows to replicate the programme within their institutions and regions. For the last three years, Dr Nshemereirwe has been instrumental in supporting these regional programmes in the role of ASLP Regional coordinator and her success is part of what led to her appointment as ASLP overall director.
“Our top priority in the coming years is to activate the community of fellows towards spreading the ASLP ethos of collective leadership around our toughest challenges as the African continent. We need to move away from the competitive and individualistic culture prevalent within our research landscape, and instead recognize that we face similar challenges”, she said.
ASLP is an initiative of the University of Pretoria and the Global Young Academy, supported by the Robert Bosch Stiftung Foundation. In its seventh year now, the ASLP aims at growing mid-career African academics in the areas of thought leadership, team management, and research development, with the intention of enabling them to contribute to the development of a new paradigm for science in Africa, focused on its contribution to solving the complex issues facing both Africa and the global community.
Dr Nshemereirwe is an independent science and policy facilitator and acts at the science-policy interface as a trainer, writer, and speaker. Her undergraduate studies were in Civil Engineering, but in later years she made the shift to Education by completing a master’s degree in the design of education and training systems at the University of Twente in 2004, which was followed by a PhD in Educational Measurement at the same University in 2014. She is a 2015 fellow of the ASLP and a past co-chair of the Global Young Academy.