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Call for Papers- 2nd International Leadership Conference for Women in Higher Education

Nairobi, Kenya|March 6-8, 2019

‘‘Theme:  Promoting Women in Science to Address the 21st Century Challenges’’

The Association of African Universities (AAU) is calling for papers for its second International Leadership Conference for Women in Higher Education in Nairobi, Kenya in 2019.

The conference comes off from March 6-8, 2019 with the final date (March 8) coinciding with the celebration of International Women’s Day, 2019, a day set aside to celebrate women and push for gender equality and equity worldwide.

As the apex organization and forum for consultation, exchange of information and co-operation among institutions of Higher Education in Africa, AAU is cognisant of the gender imbalances in African higher education and has thus been dedicated to ensuring gender inclusiveness in its various initiatives and projects.

The International Leadership Conference for Women in Higher Education is one of such key platforms provided by AAU for the discussion of innovative and creative ways of empowering women, especially young women in higher education to reach their full potential and aspire to the topmost leadership positions in their chosen fields.

The maiden edition, which was held in Accra, Ghana was highly successful and brought women across national and international boundaries together to share knowledge, ideas and strategic management skills required for success in various leadership positions.

Focus on Women in STEM

As reflected by the theme, the focus of the 2019 Conference is on Promoting Women in Science to address the 21st Century Challenges. Africa’s progress is challenged by a myriad of problems ranging from lack of employment for its youth, the existence of tropical diseases, weak entrepreneurial drive and low levels of university-industry linkages, among others. It is widely accepted, that Science and Technology do have a key role to play in overcoming the continent’s developmental challenges.

However, studies have revealed that though the number of women in science and engineering is growing, men continue to outnumber women, especially at the upper levels of these professions (AAUW, 2010). With only 24% of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) occupations being filled by women, various barriers, ranging from culture, implicit bias and subtle stereotyping to wilful ignorance and blatant discrimination have been identified as contributing factors (Pierce, Margo, 2013). Africa needs to ensure that its human resource – both men and women, are fully engaged in the STEM fields in solving its developmental challenges, and thus should make significant investment into women in STEM to increase their contribution to solving the continent’s challenges.

The promotion of Women in Science to contribute massively and equally to a developed Africa must therefore form an integral part of various plans and strategies aimed at achieving the African Union’s vision of ‘Africa We Want’ by the year 2063.   


 The Conference Theme is: Promoting Women in Science to address the 21st Century Challenges. Based on the Conference theme, the AAU is calling for papers under the following subthemes:

a) Addressing Africa’s Challenges: the Role of Women in Science.

 b) Current Developments on Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics in Africa.

c) Breaking the Glass Ceiling – Policies, Strategies and Mechanisms to support Women in STEM.

 d) Resource Mobilization Strategies to support STEM research.

e) Barriers to Female Participation in STEM fields.

The concept paper for this conference is accessible here – for further information

Conference Registration Link:


 With support from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), authors whose papers are accepted for presentation will be funded to make their presentation at the conference.

Paper abstracts not exceeding two pages, must reach the AAU Secretariat not later than February 4, 2019

The abstract should indicate the scope of the research, research objectives and methods of inquiry. The paper abstracts must also include research results and conclusions, as well as a discussion of how these findings differ from previous work on the same subject.

Please submit abstracts online at:

Presenters of successful Abstracts will be notified by February 7, 2019 and full papers will be expected to be submitted by February 28, 2019.

Additional information about the Conference will be shared with authors whose papers will be selected. Abstracts should include name(s), institutional affiliation(s), contact details of author(s) and the paper title. 

Authors of papers not selected will have the option to do a poster exhibition during the conference on condition that they fund their participation.

If you have challenges uploading your abstract, kindly contact Miss Georgina Maison at:

General Contacts:

  1. Felicia Kuagbedzi –  +233-246425147 (AAU)
  2. Nodumo Dhlamini –  (AAU)
  3. Winnie Kirui –  (CLIG, Kenya)


  1. Nabadda Cristine says:

    i want to updated on every available event

  2. Dr. Judith Atela says:

    Please update me on the outcome of submitted abstracts

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