AIMS Testimonial Portrait

German Research Chairs at the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS)

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation supports higher education and research in mathematics at the AIMS centres in Africa with the "German Research Chair" programme for application-oriented mathematics, which is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

AIMS (African Institute for Mathematical Sciences) is a Pan-African network of centres of excellence for postgraduate education, research and consulting in the field of mathematics and related sciences. The first of the now six existing centres was founded in South Africa in 2003. Further institutes are located in Senegal, Ghana, Cameroon, Tanzania and Ruanda. As part of the Aims-Next Einstein Initiative (AIMS-NEI) there will be a total of 15 supraregional centres of excellence in Africa by 2023.

Four chairs already funded at the AIMS Centres

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has already successfully created four new chairs at the AIMS centres in Senegal, South Africa, Ghana and Cameroon with its internationally-oriented German Research Chair programme. At the AIMS centre in Tanzania the selection process to appoint the chair is currently underway.

The programme is aimed at researchers in the field of mathematics worldwide who conduct application-related research and who have experience training students and doctoral candidates. The funding of the individual research chairs, which is initially for four years, generally totals up to €560,000 and is financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. In the long term, there is a movement to establish the research chairs independently of the Ministry.

International cooperation and sustainable promotion

Once the respective research chairs have been appointed, the German Academic Exchange Service then promotes cooperation with German universities and networking amongst the AIMS centres by providing appropriate scholarships. In addition, the professor is included in the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation’s alumni sponsorship and thus becomes part of the worldwide Humboldt Network.


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