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Recognising Excellence

We recognise excellence through the election of Fellows and Affiliates and science prizes to honour outstanding scientists

Nominating a Candidate for the AAS Fellowship

The African Academy of Sciences (AAS) accepts nominations for fellows in the first quarter of each year. A nomination call is sent out to all AAS Fellows/Associate Fellows at the beginning of each year.

Nominations must be received by 31st March to be processed during that year. Nominations received after 31 March will be reviewed during the following year. Only current AAS Fellows/Associate Fellows can submit nominations. Profiles of Fellows of the AAS are available on the AAS website.

The call for nominations for this year’s Fellowship will be announced in May 2019.

The recruitment process is as follows:

Profiles of Fellows of the AAS are available on the AAS website. The recruitment process is as follows:

  1. Nominees must be informed and willing to be nominated by a Fellow/Associate Fellows of the AAS. Alternatively, interested individuals may approach an AAS Fellow/Associate Fellow to nominate them. The nomination must also be seconded by a Fellow/Associate Fellow of the AAS.
  2. At least one, either the nominator or the seconder, must be in the same or allied field as the nominee.
  3. The nominator submits the nominee’s application dossier on-line on the AAS Ishango Online System. The dossier consists of:
    • A completed AAS Fellows nomination form endorsed by the Nominator, Seconder and Nominee
    • Updated curriculum vitae of the nominee
    • At least five (5) soft copies of the nominee’s best publications.
  4. The AAS secretariat then requests referee reports from the nominee's referees if these have not been included in the nomination dossier. Other independent experts may also be contacted at this time to assess the nominee.
  5. The full dossier together with the referees’ reports is sent to the respective AAS Membership Advisory Committee (MAC) for evaluation. There are 10 MACs each representing one of the AAS scientific cluster of disciplines.
  6. The MAC recommendations will be submitted to the secretariat usually by 30 August. Consensus building exchanges will then take place over four weeks.
  7. After this the profiles of nominees who have been recommended by the MAC for fellowship are circulated to the AAS Fellows to vote in new members.
  8. The AAS Governing Council will thereafter review the MAC evaluation and Fellows’ votes and elect nominees to the AAS Fellowship.
  9. The outcome of the review process is relayed by the end of the year.
  10. Newly elected members are inducted at a ceremony during the AAS General Assembly.

Honorary Fellows are elected from persons of eminence who have made significant contribution to the objectives of the Academy. Under this category of fellowship, a candidate shall be nominated by a minimum of three Fellows and/or Associate Fellows and the nomination shall be reviewed and the nominee elected directly by the Governing Council.

One of the core mandates of AAS is to recognise excellence and one of the ways it does this is by electing scholars who have excelled in their fields of expertise as its members. The AAS Fellowship comprises individuals who have reached the highest level of excellence in their field of expertise and have made contributions to the advancement of the field on the continent. The AAS Fellows are elected based on their achievements that include their publication, record, innovations, leadership roles and contribution to policy.

There are three categories:

Fellows are elected from among active African scientists residing in Africa or elsewhere and who have attained the highest international standards and/or who have made significant contributions to the development and application of science, technology and innovation in Africa.

Associate fellows are elected from among active and outstanding non-African scientists residing elsewhere or in Africa and who have made significant contributions to the development of science, technology and innovation in Africa.

Honorary fellows are elected from amongst eminent members of society who have made significant contribution to the objectives of the Academy

Non-African scientists who have taken citizenship of an African nation will be treated as Fellows. Africa-born scientists who may have taken citizenship outside Africa will be considered as Fellows.

About The Affiliate Programme

The Affiliates Programme recognizes and supports the development of promising African early and mid-career scientists into world class research leaders who contribute to the Academy’s vision of transforming lives through sciences. By supporting young scholars’ professional growth pathways, and nurturing enabling research environments, the programme meets a significant need in African higher education and research institutions of supporting African-based scholars to become independent thinkers and leaders who can generate new ideas, knowledge, and innovative solutions to Africa’s challenges. Thus, through the Affiliates programme, The AAS plays a catalytic and supportive role to the African states and their sub-regional institutions in their responsibility to attract, support and retain excellent researchers who contribute to the continent’s development agenda.

We currently have 87 Affiliates from 16 African countries and from across all disciplines. Affiliates of The AAS are selected from among young promising African scientists who have demonstrated prowess in the development and application of science in Africa. Starting 2019, up to 40 Affiliates will be selected from all disciplines and from all the five regions of Africa. On being selected, Affiliates receive for a period of five years, career development support, mentorship, networking opportunities, as well as support for an enabling research environment in their home institutions.

The AAS affiliates programme mentors and develops eminent young professionals into research leaders. Every year the aas selects 25 affiliates– five from each region who are below the age of 40, have PhDs and preferably doctoral experience work in academic and research institutions in any field.

The AAS regional offices receive and evaluate nominations for prospective affiliates, which they send to the Governing Council for approval. Successful nominees are designated as AAS Affiliates for five years. During the five years, the AAS organises activities to develop the Affiliates’ careers that include:

The designation of ‘Affiliate of The AAS’ is a meritorious recognition awarded after competitive evaluation and review by a designated body of peer reviewers and a final approval by the AAS Governing Council. This designation is held for a period of five years and there is no direct progression from Affiliate to Fellow of the Academy. During the five years, Affiliates benefit from the following:

  • Recognition as an AAS Affiliate alongside AAS Fellows, Associate Fellows and Honorary Fellows
  • Support with individualized professional development planning
  • Benefit from a range of career development activities including but not limited to grant writing, publishing, science communication, ethical conduct of research, intellectual property issues, collaborative research, scientific entrepreneurship, etc.
  • Enrolment into The AAS Mentorship Scheme where Affiliates are matched with AAS Fellows and/or other experienced professionals to achieve specific career goals.
  • Networking and collaborating platforms for the Affiliates and with other similar programmes
  • Benefit from other AAS programmes and opportunities as they become available.

The AAS Affiliates live out the Academy’s vision of transforming lives through sciences in their research and leadership excellence. They actively contribute to the programme activities while also motivating other young researchers to pursue scientific excellence. The programme accelerates their transition into independent researchers and enhances their contribution to innovations, policy engagement, mentorship, interdisciplinary collaboration and research management. Consequentially, we envision that the Affiliates’ professional growth will contribute to strengthening their institution’s scientific capacity.

Prospective candidates must meet the following requirements:

  • Must be an African national;
  • Must be residing in or affiliated with an African higher education or research institution;
  • Must have obtained their PhD in the last ten years;
  • Must have substantial postdoctoral research experience;
  • Must be aged 40 years and below by the 31st December of that year. Individual considerations will be made for female candidates above 40 years who have had career interruptions;
  • Female candidates and candidates from under-represented disciplines and countries are especially encouraged to apply.

How to get involved

Email to receive our updates and to enquire about how to become a fellow or a young affiliate and the Olusegun Obasanjo prize.


The prize is given to a scientist in any of these fields:

  • Biotechnology
  • Energy
  • Information and Communication Technologies
  • Material Sciences

Winners are individuals whose scientific discoveries or technological innovations have helped to improve their societies.