Global award

Introducing the award

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A grant from the Elsevier Foundation has ensured that an awards program for the recognition of women scientists in the developing world is feasible through 2015.

In partnership with TWAS, the academy of sciences for the developing world, (TWAS) and the Organization for Women for Science in the Developing World (OWSD), the awards provide a deep focus on discipline and professional visibility.

The five region-specific annual prizes will rotate between life sciences (2013), chemistry and physics/math and provide professional exposure at the annual American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) conference in February. Nominations are accepted from early career scientists (within ten years of graduating with a PhD degree) from the 81 countries with low scientific output as defined by TWAS. They will be reviewed by a committee of distinguished life scientists chaired by OWSD president, Prof. Fang Xin.

The Awards recognize the research excellence of women scientists working and living in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. Deadline for receiving nominations for the 2014 Awards is 15 September 2013.


Five researchers received the 2013 Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early Career Women Scientists in the Developing World for pioneering work that could contribute to life-saving research in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The prizes were presented by the Elsevier Foundation, the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD) and TWAS, the academy of sciences for the developing world to build research capacity and advance scientific knowledge throughout the developing world. The award included $5,000 and an all-expenses paid attendance at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)annual meeting in Boston, where the winners received their prizes during a ceremony on February 16. During their stay, they also visited the labs of scientists who will be their mentors.

  • Sub-Saharan Africa: Dr. Adediwura Fred-Jaiyesimi (Pharmacology and medicinal plants), Department of Pharmacognosy, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Nigeria.
  • Central and South Asia: Dr. Nasima Akhter (Medical Sciences), Center for Nuclear Medicine and Ultrasound, the Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission, and Dhaka Medical College Hospital Campus in Bangladesh.
  • Latin America & the Caribbean: Dr. Dionicia Gamboa (Molecular Biology/parasitology), Department of Cellular and Molecular Sciences and Institute of Tropical Medicine & Alexander Von Humboldt, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru.
  • East and Southeast Asia and the Pacific: Dr. Namjil Erdenechimeg (Biochemistry), Institute of Chemistry and Chemical Technology, Mongolian Academy of Sciences, Mongolia.
  • Arab region: Dr. Huda Omer Basaleem (Community and Public Health), Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Aden University, Yemen.

2013 WinnersThe winners of the 2013 Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early Career Women Scientists in the Developing World are: (left to right)

  • Dr. Nasima Akhter (Medical Sciences — Bangladesh)
  • Dr. Huda Omer Basaleem (Community and Public Health — Yemen)
  • Dr. Adediwura Fred-Jaiyesimi (Pharmacology and Medicinal Plants — Nigeria)
  • Dr. Namjil Erdenechimeg (Biochemistry — Mongolia)
  • Dr. Dionicia Gamboa (Molecular Biology/parasitology — Peru)

They are surrounded by Dr. Shirley Malcom, Head of Education and Human Resources for AAAS (back left); David Ruth, Executive Director of the Elsevier Foundation; Professor Maya de la Torre, VP, Latin America, OWSD; and Dr. Romain Murenzi, Executive Director of TWAS. (Photos by Alison Bert)

Read the full article on ElsevierConnect


"The Elsevier Awards for Early-Career Women Scientists in the Developing World" were launched in 2012 by The Elsevier Foundation, TWAS and OWSD to celebrate the achievements of women scientists in the early stages of their careers, with the aim of creating role models for other women to follow, a step that is critical for retaining top talent and building a stronger research culture in developing countries.

Nature of the Awards

  • Five Awards will be awarded annually, one each to a female scientist from one of the five regions of the world: Latin America and the Caribbean; the Arab region; Sub-Saharan Africa; Central and South Asia; and East and South-East Asia and the Pacific.
  • The five region-specific annual Awards will rotate between the life sciences, chemical sciences and physical, mathematical and engineering sciences. In 2014, the five Awards will be given in the chemical sciences.
  • The five winning scientists of the 2014 edition will be celebrated for their research excellence, and receive a cash prize of USD5,000 in addition to a year’s complimentary access to ScienceDirect and all-expenses-paid attendance at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in February 2014 in Chicago, IL, USA, where the awards ceremony will take place. The winners will also be invited to attend international events pertaining to OWSD and TWAS.

Application Process


  • Candidates must be female early-career scientists (within ten years of earning their PhD degree).
  • At nomination, candidates must have lived and worked for at least three years in one of the countries listed in the nomination form.


  • The selection process will be administered by OWSD and TWAS.
  • The assessment will be based on achievements in the field, with particular attention paid to the nominees’ publications in international peer-reviewed journals.
  • Winners will be informed of their selection in November/December 2013.


  • Nominations are invited from OWSD members, TWAS members, national science academies, national research councils and senior academics (heads of departments, heads of universities) both in developing and developed countries.
  • Self-nominations, or nominations by selection committee members, are not accepted.
  • Nominations need to be made on the nomination form and be signed by the nominator; they must include the candidate's curriculum vitae and full list of publications; and be accompanied by three reference letters.
  • Nominations must reach the OWSD Secretariat by 15 September 2013.


Inquiries and completed nomination forms should be addressed to:

OWSD-Elsevier Awards
OWSD Secretariat
ICTP campus
Strada Costiera 11
34151 Trieste, Italy
Phone: +39 040 2240321
Fax: +39 040 2240689

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