October 28, 2016

AIMS Ghana Welcomes Another Research Chair Under the German Research Chair Programme

Transforming Africa through Research Capacity Building within the Mathematical Sciences

Mathematics is a scarce skill in Africa and particularly stochastic analysis and its applications. Africa is ideally placed to develop a critical mass of expertise within these areas of mathematical sciences. The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) today welcomed Dr Olivier Menoukeu Pamen to its Research Centre in AIMS Ghana, the second German Research Chair at AIMS to be based in Ghana.

Picture of Dr Olivier Menoukeu Pamen

Dr Pamen states that “the opportunity to give back to my continent is immeasurable, and I am excited to finally take dr-pamen_picup this role after making numerous periodic teaching and research visits to various institutions in Africa including AIMS Tanzania”. AIMS presents a unique platform to help compound mathematical skills shortage in the academic and private sector. As the new German Research Chair, Dr Pamen feels privileged to be among the African scientists who will contribute towards the capacity building of the next generation of mathematical scientists on the continent. Launched in 2014, the Research Centre in AIMS Ghana is one of the developing Research centres in the Network. Dr Pamen’s presence in addition to that of the two existing Research Chairs in the AIMS Ghana Research Centre will see to the rapid growth and enhancement of the centre’s relationship with national academic institutions including the private and public sectors. His position will equally strengthen linkages between AIMS Ghana and other AIMS Centres; institutions on the continent; in Germany; and globally.

One behalf of the AIMS Network, Prof Francis Allotey, President of AIMS Ghana says “AIMS is grateful to the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the Humboldt Foundation, and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) for their continuous support to the enhancement of our projects and activities on the continent”. He added that, “the presence of the newly appointed Chair in AIMS Ghana will increase our efforts in the provision of innovative teaching and research opportunities on the continent, more so, by African scientist”.

Dr Pamen, a Cameroon-born citizen with solid expertise in stochastic analysis and its application in finance and insurance, completed his MSc in Mathematics at the University of Yaoundé I, Cameroon. He then proceeded into a PhD programme in Financial Mathematics at the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. Thereafter, he joined the Centre of Mathematics for Applications in the University of Oslo, Norway, as a Post-Doctorate research fellow. From there, he eventually took up a permanent position in the Institute for Financial and Actuarial Mathematics at the University of Liverpool.

About AIMS and the Next Einstein Initiative

The African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) is a pan-African network of Centres of Excellence for postgraduate training, research and public engagement in the mathematical sciences. Its mission is to enable Africa’s brightest students to flourish as independent thinkers, problem solvers and innovators capable of propelling Africa’s future scientific, educational and economic self-sufficiency. AIMS was founded in 2003 and has produced more than 1200 graduates, about one third of whom are women. The goal of the Next Einstein Initiative (NEI) is to build 15 Centres of Excellence across Africa by 2023. Of these, six are already operational in Cameroon, Ghana, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania.

About the German Research Chair programme in ‘ Mathematics and its Applications’

The German Research Chair in “Mathematics and its Applications” at AIMS Ghana is established under the programme financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) entitled “German Research Chairs” and intended as a long-term contribution to strengthening mathematical higher education and research in Africa, in particular to promoting international networking in mathematics. The chair holder is invited to conduct research stays in Germany, and may arrange these flexibly. The research chair at AIMS Ghana is the second chair to be filled. The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has funded a research chair at the AIMS Centre in Senegal since December 2012. The Senegalese Humboldtian and mathematician Prof Mouhamed Moustapha Fall holds this chair. As part of the German Research Chairs programme that is financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, a total of five Research Chairs at AIMS centres in Cameroon, Ghana, Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania are to be filled. Collaboration with AIMS is part of the Humboldt Foundation’s efforts to strengthen cooperation with transition and developing countries.

About the Humboldt Foundation

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation links Germany to the knowledge of the world. In global competition for the topmost experts, it offers to this end various programmes to attract scientists and scholars at different stages of their careers. Support involves both funding and personal support in all matters relating to a stay in Germany and to later cooperations. For these cooperations, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation offers numerous kinds of sponsorship in the framework of the alumni programmes. In this way, an active international network of more than 27,000 academics has grown up since the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation was founded in 1953.

About DAAD

The DAAD is the world’s largest funding organization for the international exchange of students and researchers. Since it was founded in 1925, more than 1.9 million scholars in Germany and abroad have received DAAD funding. The funding offers range from a year abroad for undergraduates to doctoral programmes, from internships to visiting lectureships, and from information gathering visits to assisting with the establishment of new universities abroad. Voluntary, independent selection committees decide on the funding. The DAAD promotes the international activities of German institutions of higher education. Within the framework of the German Research Chair programme DAAD supports activities of German universities with the respective chair holders and AIMS centres.


To learn more, please visit www.nexteinstein.org.
Media contacts:
Mimi Kalinda | Email: mkalinda@nexteinstein.org
For more information please contact:
AIMS: Dr Rosita E. Yocgo | Email: ryocgo@nexteinstein.org
Humboldt: Dr. Simone Heil | Email: simone.heil@avh.de
DAAD: Mrs. Margot Weiler-Wohlfarth | Email: weiler@daad.de

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