Partner Spotlight: Agropolis Fondation

Partner Spotlight: Agropolis Fondation

Since 2009, a partnership between Agropolis Fondation and AWARD has made a tremendous contribution to our shared mission of building and sustaining a robust and effective talent pool in agricultural research for Africa. In its mission to promote and support high-level agricultural research for sustainable development, Agropolis has been a valued partner of AWARD, first in the flagship AWARD Fellowship for African women scientists, then more recently in the One Planet Fellowship.

One particularly fruitful collaboration area has remained on AST placements for African women scientists in some of the leading French research laboratories. AST placements are designed to strengthen and expand the scientists’ technical expertise in their selected research areas and to help African women scientists broaden their professional networks.

Hosting an AST placement offers European institutions and their researchers deep insight into the research agenda and context within which their African counterparts are conducting research. AST placements also provide both European and African scientists with the opportunity to enter into new and ongoing research collaborations and expanded professional networks. 

The first AWARD Fellow to benefit from the partnership between AWARD and Agropolis Fondation was a 2011 AWARD Fellow, Dr. Bolanle Otegbayo, a Nigerian scientist investigating food quality and industrial potential of Nigerian yams. 

Since then, many more women have had the opportunity to deepen their skills and widen their networks through this partnership. Between 2011 and 2017, the Agropolis Fondation hosted 22 women scientists from eight African countries.