Project Coordinator: ARUA/UKRI Centres of Excellence Project
In October 2018, UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) entered into an agreement that would see UKRI provide two sets of grants to support the work of ARUA Centres of Excellence. In this exciting partnership, ARUA and UKRI have agreed to work together to tackle a number of global development challenges, including poverty and inequality, climate change, food security and unemployment. The two institutions have a shared commitment to build the capacity of African institutions to generate knowledge around different thematic areas.
Under the first strand of support from UKRI, ARUA Centres of Excellence will receive a maximum of £8 million over three years for capacity-building purposes. The second strand is for research excellence, aimed at supporting 6 institutions with a maximum of £12 million for their agreed research programmes, in partnership with selected UK universities.
The grants under this partnership are made directly with the host ARUA university for the relevant Centre of Excellence.
The Role of ARUA Secretariat
While the ARUA Secretariat is not expected to play any direct role in the administration of the UKRI grants, the Secretariat is required to have an oversight and monitoring function in the application of the grants and report on this annually. The oversight and monitoring function will include the following:
- Ensure that the functioning/operation of the Centres of Excellence is in conformity with the principles and practices agreed between ARUA and the host universities, and captured in the ARUA Centres of Excellence Concept Note.
- Develop a Memorandum of Understanding with each ARUA host university based on the agreed principles and practices reflected in the CoE Concept Note
- Ensure that each Centre of Excellence has an appropriately structured governance arrangement, including an Advisory Board with ARUA and UKRI representation.
- Monitor the research and capacity-building programmes to review and report on the progress they are making and to ensure that they reflect the ideals set by ARUA and detailed in the call documents and grant award letters issued by UKRI.
- Monitor and facilitate collaboration among ARUA Centres of Excellence to achieve their goals and objectives as set out in their research proposals and their set goals and objectives in support of the SDGs.
- Ensure accountability from ARUA Centres of Excellence and host universities.
- Monitor compliance with agreements signed between ARUA universities and UKRI.
- Report compliance and progress of ARUA CoEs and awarded projects annually to UKRI
It is intended to develop appropriate monitoring instruments that will be used for this ARUA function and will include annual meetings with the management of the CoEs and host universities and with UKRI.
The Role of a full-time Coordinator
The Coordinator function is expected to be full-time. Reporting directly to the Secretary-General, he/she will be required to play the following roles
- Keep a record of all activities and outputs of each ARUA CoE and funded project
- Monitor and advise the Secretary-General and UKRI regularly on the compliance or otherwise with the Terms of Reference for each CoE
- Participate in meetings of the Advisory Boards of all ARUA CoEs in an ex-officio capacity, especially when the ARUA Secretary-General and UKRI are not in attendance;
- Prepare an annual report on each of the 13 Centres of Excellence, including reports on the 6 Research Excellence grants ensuring that these provide the information agreed as necessary for UKRI and ARUA to monitor and evaluate their progress.
- Publicise the work of the ARUA CoEs on the ARUA website and through other means.
Terms of Appointment for Coordinator
- The position is designed for an early-career academic, preferably with a PhD in any discipline. The person must write and communicate well, and be able to comment reasonably well on the research activities of all the 13 Centres of Excellence.
- The Coordinator will be based in Accra.
- The remuneration will be competitive.
- Eligible women are strongly encouraged to apply.
- It is intended to make a 3-year appointment in the first instance.
If interested, please send email with application letter and detailed CV to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Applications will be received throughout November 2019 and not beyond. The successful applicant will begin work on 2nd January 2020.