H7. HR&S Network of Scientific Researchers in Sub-Sahara Africa

The network is managed by the network members them-selves. The management team have the overall responsibility and each team-member have minimum one task to manage.

We benefit from ROPE and move forward firmly in a structured manner. ActionONE is honoured and the ambitions are  needs and user driven.

Network Management

Felix LOMPO, Team-leader (francophone)
Empower the management team and address tasks that enhances evidence based sustainable impact.
Millicent SIFUNA (anglophone).


Burkina Faso

  • Stéphanie MAÏGA
    Ouagadougou University.
  • P. Felix LOMPO
  • Brice Alain KABORE
    Joseph KI-ZERBO University.
  • Aminata  OUATTARA
  • Charlene KINDA
  • Lasisi ZOUNGRANA


  • Joan Chepkemri KOECHAT
    Acting Chief technologist, Dep.Biological Sciences. University of Eldoret. Also member of Operations team in HR&S Network for Technicians.
  • Mariam SWALEH
    University of Mombassa.
  • Millicent SIFUNA
    University of Nairobi. M.Sc. PhD student in USA from 2023.
  • Kevin Daniel WERUNGA
  • Geofrey MALOBA
    Masinde Muliro University
  • Dorothy OMUOK
    Msc student in Applied Parasitology from the University of Nairobi.


  • Valens HABIMANA
    University of Rwanda.
  • Sibosiko CONSOLEE


  • Simon LUKATO
    Graduate Research And Teaching Assistant, Makerere University.
    Studying in Poland during 2022.
  • Atwine AMBROSE


  • Swivia HAMABWE

With support from

Assoc. Prof. Cecilia ÖMAN, CEO, HR&S HQ Sweden.
Prof. Stéphanie MAÏGA, Head of Operations, HR&S Branch Burkina Faso (francophone).
Dr. Krishna MURTHY, HR&S expert adviser, mentor & trainer on scientific research, India.



Lack of a network for researchers targeting all SSA countries.


During HR&S impact survey, researchers often state that they lack networking. Researchers often also claim that they suffer from a fragile scientific capacity strengthening strategy at the Institutional level.
  • The network is member driver. There is no institution or paid staff that will organise a programme for others to join. It is an effort from each member.
  • It is an exclusive network in the sense that only researchers with an HR&S certificate from a training are eligible.
  • It is important for the network to have at least a minimum level of activities while we build our strength. These are monthly training/review sessions combined with ROPE session. The training can be offered by Dr Murthy, Cecilia or anyone else on the network. Network members may want to base their trainings on a resource that has been collected from the AuthorAid or Research4life website. The review is based on a network members own work. It can be organised in a way that the network member presents a draft manuscript of draft grant application to the team, the team reviews the material during the month and offers advice during the following monthly meeting.
  • We assign one hour once a month: 40 minutes is set aside for training/ review and 20 min for the ROPE work. The event takes place on a Thursday after work.
unsplash - dreams
  • We only invite those who have an HR&S certificate to the network. We see the certificate as an indicator of intrinsic motivation. We can only have members that are self-driven.
  • Better with a small group to start with, with self-driven participants, than trying to push people who actually do not have the motivation.
  • When members motivate themselves, they also become role-models for others.


ONE Support individual researchers

    • Support each other
      • Share knowledge and exchange views.
      • Give advice on scientific matters.
      • Strengthening each other to become financially self-sustained.
      • Strengthening the multidisciplinary capacity.
    • Facilitate the submission of manuscripts to peer-reviewed scientific journals.
    • Facilitate the submission of research grant applications.
    • Facilitate the implementation of scientific findings.

Ambition ONE is addressed by:

  1. Arranging monthly webinars where:
    1. Network members present to the team different resources from internet; AuthorAid and Research4Life etc.
      Presenters will then become network experts on the topic of the presentation, they will deepen their understanding and share this knowledge also during future events.
    2. Network members bring draft manuscripts and grant applications which is reviewed by the team and sometimes by an HR&S expert.
  2. Training events
    1. Network members attend AuthorAid courses.
    2. Offer week long coaching/training by HR&S experts targeting draft manuscripts and grant applications.

TWO Support Institutions

Support the establishment of links between HR&S Sweden and Academic Institution managements for the Institution management to benefit from ROPE coaching in order to empower their Institution’s Scientific Capacity Strengthening strategy.

Outcome challenges

  1. Network management efficiency.
  2. Network efficiency.
  3. Lack of access to quality internet among members.
  4. Language barrier between Francophone and Anglophone Africa.


  1. Develop and implement ROPE for the network.
  2. Coach on time management.
  3. Develop a time-line.
  4. Assign two training officers.
  5. Benefit from interpreter and also provide training in the English language.
  6. Presenters become network experts on the topic of the presentation, they continuously deepen their understanding and share this knowledge also during future events.
  7. Dr Murthy to offer support to researchers that are about to submit manuscript and/or application for grants with webinars where we are also discussing the researcher’s own drafts. As progress marker we can then easily have the submission of the drafts.
  8. Participants presents their research as well as resources found on Author aid and Research4Lifer websites.
  9. Attend the AuthorAid on-line training courses. https://www.authoraid.info/en/e-learning/. https://youtu.be/mg5uhGJHTMQ.

    AuthorAID offers online courses in research writing and proposal writing, which are free-to-enrol for researchers in developing countries. Courses are hosted on INASP Moodle. AuthorAID runs regular MOOCs in research writing or grant proposal writing. Since 2015 over 20,000 participants have taken our courses, with an average completion rate of almost 50%.

  10. Monthly training one hour with homework. After the training 0,5 h management meeting.


Targeting outcome challenges by network members

  1. Develop and implement ROPE for the network – Cecilia.
    • The ROPE is developed and kept updated, it is presented on the web page. Lessons are learned and informed decisions taken.
  2. Benefit from interpreter and also provide training in the English language – vacant
    • Find a person who has a better command of both English and French and who could act as an interpreter. However, we must recognize the international language has become English and we will have to master it at some point, both written and spoken. (by Brice Alain)
  3. Internet
    Ensure that all network members have access to a good enough  internet – vacant
    We need to generate income that can be shared among the network members to help ensure internet.
  4. Reoccurring meeting time
    • Survey among members when for the most appreciated meeting time and invite with the same zoom link every month – Felix.
      Invite also the FAST Network when appropriate.
  5. Compilation of network participant data – Mariam, Valens
    We are all researchers, among us we do not know the different fields of activity. Maybe it would be better to strengthen the links of the network by knowing what each other is doing, field of research, level, difficulties if any, needs. This will allow to create a collaborative activities, collaboration of research and other.
    • Mariam and Valens will develop a survey tool, and think through how to compile and analyse that data.
    • Mariam may want to see how such a compilation can be useful for RSC.
  6. Institution data – vacant
    Compile a list of academic institutions linked to this programme – vacant
    That will initially be just informal, thus the institutions of the researchers who are members of the network. Compilation of physical locations , their operations, and contact persons. The purpose with a list of institutions could be for the researchers to know the areas of capacity of institutions that also have a welcoming attitude towards visitors and sharing.
  7. Presentation of resources from internet – coordination Felix
    For example AuthorAid and Research4Life
    • Develop and implement a monthly meeting presentation scheme for every half year – Felix
    • Compile the presentation material – Felix
  8. AuthorAID training – coordinator Mariam
    Ensure that the network members benefit from the Free AuthorAID online courses in research communication and proposal writing. https://www.authoraid.info/en/e-learning/. Compile a list of those who will attend
    Mariam kindly agrees to coordinate around the upcoming AuthorAid course; ensure everybody is aware, compile a list of those who will attend, make a small review after about what we thought about the course.
    Upcoming dates 2022
        5th April to 16th May 2022 – Research Writing (6 weeks)
        6th September  to 1st November 2022 – Research Writing and Proposal Writing (8 weeks).
  9. INASP – vacant
    Members ensure that they benefit from the INASP access to publications free of charge through their librarians.
  10. Review webinars – coordination vacant
    Manuscript draft and grant application draft review meetings and where we will be experts on the topic that we have presented on.
  11. Webinars by HR&S Expert, coordinator vacant, vacant
    Date, agenda, trainer, invite, compile participants, ensuring access to internet, coordinating the logistics
    around the examinations, developing and distributing certificates.
    • Dr Murthy offers to do bi-annual training events on manuscript writing and grant application writing, where participants bring their own drafts
    • Cecilia, Millicent, Stéphanie offer to back-up the coordination.
  12. Seek travelgrants – vacant,, vacant
    With the purpose of arranging events where network members an meet IRL

Reaching out to institution management

Support University managements with HR&S training and coaching.

  1. Identifying potential customers – coordination vacant
    Network members identify individuals within their academic institution for HR&S to reach out to. Persons with intrinsic motivation, agency for change and potential to understand the HR&S Strategy for Change.
  2. Designing procedures for how HR&S can support institutions – vacant
    We develop a customer survey template. We  collect information on which type of services that HR&S can provide to institutions that they would seriously benefit from. And how much they would be willing to pay for the service. The main first questions would be; i) which are the outcome challenges that the institution faces and ii) how to they handle these challenges today.  Then we use this information to propose a solution based on the HR&S tools and experiences.


  1. Membership is free of charge financially, instead everyone contribute with their own work effort, as the network is member driven.


Achieved Output 2021

  1. The network is formally established under HR&S and benefits from the HR&S webpage in 2021.
  2. Name agreed on in 2021:
    HR&S Network of Scientific Researchers in Sub-Sahara African countries for quality research management.
    The HR&S REACH Network.
  3. WhatsApp Chat group established in 2021.
  4. Management Team established in 2021, but did not become operational.
  5. Team of members established in 2021.
  6. Monthly zoom meetings were established in 2021.


  • Presentations
    • Brice gave a presentation from AuthorAid resources in February 2022 on “how to read and understand a scientific paper- a guide for non- scientists”.
    • Kevin shared about writing a scientific paper in our April 2022 meeting and we learnt about the different components of a scientific paper.
    • Mariam held a presentation on “data collection” during our meeting in May 2022.
    • Felix June?
    • Valens July?
  • New members with certificates from HR&S trainings with Dr Murthy joined.

Progress markers

  1. 90% of the team members attend the monthly webinars.
    • 2021 (zoom meetings) – score 1
  2. AuthorAid resources
    Ten resources are presented annually.
  3. AuthorAid courses.
    Each network member attends one course per year.

Lessons learned

Network management efficiency

Activities: Members have to be active. Members have to feel part of the group. That is why we distribute small  assignment.
Time-management: Improve capacity of time management.
Time-line:  We should have a timeline for the work. We can celebrate small achievements. We can have small assignments per person and larger ones that we all contribute to.
Status and reflections 2022, March:
– Maybe slowly but firmly are we building the platform and the procedures for our network.
– We always honour our ActionPrinciple No1, needs and user driver instead of aid driven. Thus, we want to identify those who are leaders and who wants to actively push the network forward.
Is is good to make a review from time to time among those who have signed up as leaders, and those who have signed up as members. If the leaders have noticed that they do not have much time actually right now to be active, they may want to take a member role instead. Those who are members and have leadership aspirations may want to become leaders instead. Being a leader is a huge responsibility and also rewarding. Being an inactive leader is not good at all, in damages all the efforts put in by others. Each one to please reflect and inform.
– We are benefiting from the HR&S Management Strategy that firmly helps us to be effective and efficient. It may take a little time to get used to the way of working and building the team. But we will.


It is a members-driven network. We request that the network members put own effort into the network. All in relation to what we decide to achieve. We reflect over and agree together, what the network wants to achieve. We set up a SfC for the network, then activities and milestones.

We are always happy to welcome new members.

The eligibility criteria are: 

  1. To have attended minimum one of the HR&S training sessions and having passed the training examination.
  2. Be committed to be active in the network.
    Regular members are expected to invest minimum one hour per week, and the team of operations to invest minimum two hours per week, and more when temporarily required.
  3. Also to attend monthly one hour network zoom-meetings, well prepared for the meeting and with good internet connections.
  4. Meet assignment dead-lines and report back during the monthly meetings.


Members are:
1. Invited to upcoming events, such as webinars. Free of charge.
2. Invited to benefit from any activity arranged through the network.

Monthly meeting, one hour, zoom
Possibly 1st Friday of the month
12 noon pm Burkina Faso, Togo, Liberia
1 pm Nigeria, Sweden (winter time)
2 pm Zambia, Rwanda
3 pm Kenya, Uganda
5.30 pm India