Enhancing Education Research in Africa (EERA)


EERA addresses the unique funding challenges faced by African researchers and institutions.

Recognising these challenges, a consortium of funders (Echidna Giving, Imaginable Futures, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Porticus) partnered to host the first-ever Forum for Education Research in/for/by Africa. This Forum provided a platform for the Africa-based education research community to discuss, share, and exchange ideas. It also facilitated the co-design of a set of principles aimed at informing how funders can redirect resources to support quality education research in the region.

The findings from the Forum align to the evidence from the African Education Research Database (AERD), a collaboration between Education Sub Saharan Africa (ESSA) and the REAL Centre at the University of Cambridge. A conference, jointly hosted by ESSA and the REAL Centre in June 2021, brought together researchers and funders to explore pathways for advancing African-led research.

Addressing this challenge, ESSA and the Southern Hemisphere (SH) are implementing an inclusive design process. This process empowers the Africa-based research community by providing them with the opportunity to identify what is necessary to establish a robust and sustainable African education research ecosystem. Building upon existing knowledge and leveraging ongoing and relevant initiatives in the region, this process aims to create a solid foundation. This project is funded by Echidna Giving, Imaginable Futures and the Jacobs Foundation.


The primary purpose of this design process is to determine the prerequisites for establishing a strong and sustainable African education research system, led by African researchers and supported by locally generated evidence that can be used both locally and internationally to enhance education.

This comprehensive process is set to unfold over 18 months (from June 2023 to November 2024), covering East Africa, West Africa, and Southern Africa.


  •  An inclusive process with clearly defined mechanisms aimed at actively and intentionally involving Africa-based researchers, practitioners, and decision-makers in shaping the next steps.

  • A persuasive and authoritative document containing a collection of proposals that funders can utilise for advocacy purposes.

Steering Group Members

Meet the experts behind our steering group, ensuring smart and effective use of funds for the EERA project. Here are their names:

Together, they work to strengthen the field of education research in Africa.


Report: A Situational Analysis on the State of the Education Research Field in Africa

Executive Summary: A Situational Analysis on the State of the Education Research Field in Africa

Vision for the field of Education Research in Africa

Past Events

Enhancing Education Research in Africa (EERA) Virtual Convenings: 11 April and 18 April 2024

These sessions served as a platform for collaboration and knowledge exchange among Africa's education research community. During these workshops, participants had the opportunity to contribute towards identifying innovative interventions that will shape the future of education research on the continent.

ARUA Conference 2023: Reimagining the Future of Higher Education in Africa

ESSA and the Southern Hemisphere were delighted to jointly participate in the Fourth African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) Biennial International Conference hosted by the University of Lagos, Nigeria, from 15-17 November 2023.

We led two lively co-creation sessions as part of our Enhancing Education Research in Africa (EERA) project. We aimed to explore ways to establish a strong African education research system, driven by African researchers, where local evidence is used to enhance education throughout the region.

Two key themes emerged during the discussions and other conference sessions:

  • The importance of increased collaboration among education research actors

  • The challenge of securing funding from African sources

We are excited about the future of education research in Africa and look forward to more collaborations.

Education Evidence for Action (EE4A) Conference: Revitalizing the Evidence Community for Kenya’s Education

From 29–30 November 2023, ESSA and Southern Hemisphere joined researchers, academics, policymakers and other producers and users of evidence in the education sector at the Fifth Biennial Education Evidence for Action (EE4A) Conference to engage in discourses about the use of evidence for actionable and measurable planning and outcomes. The conference was organised by the Zizi Afrique Foundation and hosted by Tom Mboya University, Homa Bay County, Kenya.

The engaging and stimulating pre-conference workshop on 28 November hosted by the Deans Forum of Education Colleges, where we discussed evidence-informed curriculum development and the implementation of the new curriculum in Kenya, has set the stage for meaningful progress.

We look forward to building on the relationships forged during this event and creating a strong and sustainable African education research system.

Are you curious to learn more about our exciting project? Contact us for more information and be a part of the journey!

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Southern Hemisphere

Southern Hemisphere is an African, women-owned socio-economic development consultancy with the single-minded focus of creating meaningful social change. Its participatory approach involves collaborating with its clients to achieve a shared end vision for beneficiaries.

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