Career Development Fellowships – 2015

Type of actionTraining & Mobility Action (TMA)
Open date12 November 2015, 15:00
Close date04 February 2016, 15:00
Budget€ 1.5 million
Funding level100% of eligible costs

The purpose of this Call for Proposals is to provide funding to actions that aim to support junior to mid-career researchers (“fellows”) to train and develop their clinical research skills.

Call identifier: TMA2015CDF

See the list of awarded projects

The purpose of this Call for Proposals is to provide funding to actions that aim to support junior to mid-career researchers (“fellows”) to train and develop their clinical research skills.

Call identifier: TMA2015CDF

See the list of awarded projects



There is a severe shortage of opportunities for junior and mid-career researchers to acquire and develop clinical research skills in sub-Saharan Africa. Increased possibilities for individual training would enable talented scientists to establish themselves as independent researchers and team leaders at host institutions in sub-Saharan Africa.


The purpose of this Call for Proposals is to provide funding to actions that aim to support junior to mid-career researchers (“fellows”) to train and develop their clinical research skills.

The objectives are:

  1. To promote career development and retention of postdoctoral researchers and postgraduate medical researchers in the research field and in sub-Saharan Africa.
  2. To equip the fellows with the ability to establish themselves as independent researchers and with the skills to initiate and manage their own research and team at host organisations in sub-Saharan Africa.


The proposed action should specifically enhance the ability of the fellow to design, plan and execute clinical biomedical and/or social science/ethics research projects within the scope of the EDCTP2 programme(1). The proposed training should include an independent research activity and a clear description of the skills that will be acquired by carrying out the research. Fellows with training activities involving clinical trials and related studies must ensure that studies are appropriately designed and GCP-compliant. Individuals targeted by this Call for Proposals should have a track record of publications in peer-reviewed journals in their chosen area of research; a mentor who is an internationally recognised scientific leader working in sub-Saharan Africa; and a career development plan as part of the research proposal.

Applications for an EDCTP Career Development Fellowship must be submitted by the prospective fellow in conjunction with and on behalf of their proposed host organisation (hereinafter ‘the applicant legal entity’). The grants are awarded to the host organisation with the explicit commitment that this organisation offers appropriate conditions for the fellow to direct and manage its funding for the duration of the fellowship. Fellows can only be funded once under this grant scheme.

Expected impact

Activities funded under this Call for Proposals will promote career progression, encourage entry and re-integration of African scientists trained abroad, and ensure the retention of postdoctoral and postgraduate researchers in their respective research fields and that the researchers develop into independent researchers and team leaders in sub-Saharan Africa. The progressive generation of independent researchers, re-entry of ones trained abroad and retention of those working in sub-Saharan Africa will ultimately contribute to creation of a critical mass of internationally recognised scientific leaders, institutions and networks that will sustain high quality research in sub-Saharan Africa.


The following eligibility criteria apply to this Call for Proposals:

  1. The applicant must be an organisation with an established legal entity in sub-Saharan Africa(2).
  2. The fellow must be employed or have guaranteed employment by the applicant (the host organisation) where they intend to remain working for a minimum of two years after the expiration of the grant.
  3. The fellow must:
  • be a resident of or be willing to relocate to a sub-Saharan African country
  • be either a graduate in a subject relevant to the EDCTP2 programme, with a PhD and up to five years relevant postdoctoral research experience, or a medical doctor with up to five years’ research experience.
  1. The requested EDCTP contribution per year shall not exceed 50,000 EUR.
  2. The maximum fellowship duration shall be 36 months.



  1. For the purpose of this Call for Proposals, PRDs include HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis and the following neglected infectious diseases (NIDs): dengue/severe dengue; rabies; human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness); Leishmaniases; cysticercosis/taeniasis; dracunculiasis (guinea-worm disease); echinococcosis; foodborne trematodiases; lymphatic filariasis; onchocerciasis (river blindness); schistosomiasis; soil-transmitted helminthiases; Buruli ulcer; leprosy (Hansen disease); trachoma; yaws, diarrhoeal infections; lower respiratory infections; as well as emerging infectious diseases of particular relevance for Africa, such as Ebola.
  2. For this Call for Proposals, Sub-Saharan Africa includes: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo (Democratic People’s Republic), Congo (Republic), Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Procedure and application process

Submission and evaluation procedure

This is a single-stage application procedure. A full proposal must be submitted via EDCTPgrants by 04 February 2016 at 17:00 CET (16:00 GMT).

The evaluation results will be available by 10 June 2016.

The host organisation (applicant) must provide a letter confirming that the organisation is supportive of the proposed action and willing through its financial and administrative systems to enable the fellow to direct independently the proposed action and manage its funding for the duration of the fellowship.

Evaluation criteria, scoring and thresholds

This call follows a single-stage application procedure. Following an admissibility and eligibility check, full proposals are evaluated by external, independent experts. Proposals are evaluated according to the criteria Excellence, Impact and Implementation. Each criterion is scored between 0 and 5. The threshold for individual criteria is 3 and the overall threshold for the sum of the three individual scores is 10. Applicants have the opportunity to submit a written response to the expert reviewers’ comments prior to an expert review committee meeting convened by EDCTP to finalise the funding recommendations.

The following aspects are considered under the evaluation criteria:


  • Fit with the scope and objectives of EDCTP2 and the call topic description
  • Importance, relevance and clarity of the objectives
  • Credibility of the proposed approach
  • Clarity, pertinence and importance of the strategic vision
  • Suitability of the candidate, considering their track record, degree of independence and/or potential, and how the fellowship will further the individual’s career
  • Quality of the project and its fit with the fellow’s expertise and career development plan, including acquired competencies and skills to be developed further.



  • Contribution towards the expected impacts listed in the work plan under the relevant topic
  • Likelihood to result in major advances for the field
  • Contribution of the fellowship to the fellow’s clinical research skills and career development
  • Contribution to strengthening clinical research capacity at the home or host institution
  • Effectiveness of the proposed measures to exploit and disseminate results generated during the fellowship (including management of IPR), to communicate the fellowship activities, and, where relevant, to manage clinical data
  • Sustainability and retention of capacity post-award.


Quality and efficiency of the implementation

  • Coherence and effectiveness of the proposed work, including appropriateness of the allocation of tasks and resources
  • Feasibility and appropriateness of the methods and project management to achieve the objectives within the timeframe of the grant
  • Appropriateness of the management structures and procedures, including risk and innovation management, and how responsibilities for research data quality and sharing, and security will be met
  • Compliance with national and international standards of research, Good Clinical Practice, ethics and safety related issues
  • Complementarity of the participants within the consortium and gender balance among consortium members (when relevant)
  • Participants have the operational capacity, to carry out the proposed work, based on the competence and experience of the individual participant(s)
  • Suitability of the fellow’s home organisation to support the fellowship project
  • Intention of the fellow’s home organisation to develop and commit to a career post-fellowship or re-integration plan.


Financial provisions 

The call budget is 1.5 million EUR.

The maximum fellowship duration shall be 36 months and the requested EDCTP contribution per year shall not exceed 50,000 EUR. EDCTP may fund 100% of eligible project costs.

Grant Agreement

The legal entity employing the successful fellow (‘host organisation’) is required to sign a grant agreement with EDCTP (EDCTP2 mono-beneficiary grant agreement with options for fellowships) within three months of receipt of the conditional award letter. EDCTP will only sign grant agreements with organisations (legal entities) that are registered in the Beneficiary Register for Horizon 2020 and that have a validated Participant Identification Code (PIC). For more information, see the H2020 participant portal.

Application Process

  • The application must be submitted online via EDCTPgrants
  • Only registered users of the EDCTPgrants system can apply for grants and therefore you are advised to register on the system as soon as possible.
  • Please read the guidance in the online application form before submitting an application.

Call document

More information

For questions related to this Call for Proposals, please contact:


For questions and issues about EDCTPgrants and the online application submission please contact EDCTP via EDCTPgrants[at] or +27 (0) 21 938 0690.

For more information about EDCTP2 procedures, please refer to the EDCTP2 Grants Manual.