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Canada to spend 22.6m dollars to train African mathematical scientists

Canada’s Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau

Canada’s Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau

Canada’s Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Ms Marie-Claude Bibeau, has announced the donation of 22.6 million Canadian dollars to African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) over five years.

The information is contained in a statement issued by Mr Thierry Zomahoun, the President of AIMS, made available on Thursday in Abuja.

Zomahoun said Bibeau made the announcement in Cape Town, South Africa, and that the amount was to be used to train African mathematical scientists to develop climate change adaptation and mitigation solutions.

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According to him, 19.6 million Canadian dollars out of the amount will be delivered via Global Affairs Canada, while the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) will deliver 3 million Canadian dollars.

He stated that “with the funding, AIMS will expand its successful model of training African post-graduate students in advanced mathematical sciences to incorporate a greater focus on climate change.

“The funding will be delivered via Global Affairs Canada (19.6 million Canadian dollars) and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) (3 million Canadian dollars).

“IDRC will manage the fund on behalf of the Government of Canada; with this Government of Canada funding, AIMS will develop a specialised programme in climate change at AIMS-Rwanda and a climate change course option will be offered at all AIMS centres.

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“This initiative demonstrates Canada’s commitment to Africa’s youth and their ability to find lasting solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges, like climate change.

“AIMS will make great strides to increase the recruitment and advancement of young mathematical scientists, especially women, in Africa.”

Zomahoun noted that AIMS would also support three research chairs to lead 50 African researchers to build a specialised body of knowledge in addressing the impacts of climate change in Africa.

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He stated that AIMS would create a climate change internship programme for its students and alumni, as well as research fellowships for outstanding African women mathematical scientists to conduct climate change research.

In addition, he noted, AIMS centre would be opened in Francophone Africa.

AIMS is building a critical mass of mathematical scientists in Africa who can address the continent’s complex economic, health, agriculture, and environmental challenges.

Every year, 50 of Africa’s top students enroll in each of AIMS’ six centres to take a 10-month graduate-level course, leading to a Master’s degree in mathematical science.

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