Research underpins the successful implementation of health intervention programs, which is lacking in low-to-middle income countries (LMIC) where most of preventable diseases occur. The LMICs account for 90% of global burden of preventable diseases and yet they are recipients of only 10% of the resources available for research. The obstacles are many and although this situation has improved in recent times through external collaborations with scientists and institutions they do not significantly address the problem. This situation is further compounded by the volume of work required to satisfy the requirements; compliance of pre-and post-award, of the major funding agencies including the NIH, Wellcome Trust, EU etc. The frequent changes in policies and regulations make it more difficult for LMICs to follow without the institutional structures/mechanisms in place. We hypothesize that a major contributing factor to the dearth of health research in LMICs is the inability to secure competitive research grants by LMICs? scientists and research institutions because of the virtual non-existence of offices to support grant applications. We propose the establishment of offices of research management in three selected African tertiary institutions. Over the course of eighteen months, this initiative will set up registered research management offices in at least 3 African institutions and provide training to staff to gain competencies in managing sponsored research grants that meet the requirement of funding agencies. It will build on the successes of CaBERA award that established three offices of research management in Ghanaian tertiary institutions. It will also build on the long standing record of the Ghana-Yale Partnership for Global Health for capacity building for health research.
The Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR), Ghana collaboration with Yale University?s Office of Sponsored Research successfully applied to NIH in 2016 for a G11 capacity building grant titled Capacity Building for Enhanced Research Administration (CaBERA) at Noguchi Memorial Institute with the aim to strengthen the ORS at NMIMR and in addition help establish such offices in two other tertiary institutions in Ghana. At the end of the project period, a systematic evaluation of the project, especially in establishing research offices in two other Institutes, revealed the need for such offices across Africa. The overall objective of this project is therefore, building upon the successes of the first project, seek support for the establishment of research management offices in three selected Institutes in Africa.