ACE Impact

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Africa Centres of Excellence Project 

Preamble:  The Africa Centers of Excellence (ACE) Project follows the success of the Teaching and Learning Innovation Fund (TALIF), a component of the Education Sector Project (EdSeP) implemented with support from IDA to the Government of Ghana.  The EdSeP which was completed in 2010 had the TALIF component, a competitive fund which supported innovation, research, teaching and learning, and Higher Education capacity building in Ghana.  The aim of the current Africa Centres of Excellence is to improve research and development; strengthen Africa’s technological leadership; and to foster cross-border research and academic collaborations.



  • Virtual ACE Impact Project Steering Committee Decision Meeting July 23rd
  • Internal ACE Impact World Bank approval meeting – late July
  • Formal launch of the Call for Proposals – early August
  • Deadline for receipt of Call for Proposals – end of September
  • Evaluation and Selection Process – October
  • Project Steering Committee (PSC) Selection Meeting – early November

Distribution of Materials

We anticipate distributing the following documents during the week of July 2 for consideration during the July 23 PSC Meeting

  • Project Appraisal Document (PAD)
  • Call for Proposals, including Proposal Preparation Guidance
  • Evaluation and Selection Criteria, including Evaluation Rubrics

ACE I (2014 – 2019) precedes ACE III Impact (2019 – 2023) in West and Central Africa.  The ACE I development objective is to have regional specialization in areas that address specific common regional development challenges; to deliver high quality training and applied research; and to meet the demand for skills required for Africa's development.  The ongoing ACE Projects, the first in West and Central Africa and the second in Southern and Eastern Africa together cover over 40 universities in 16 African countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Senegal, Nigeria, Ghana, Cote d'Ivoire, The Gambia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.  The Association of African Universities (AAU) is the regional facilitation unit for both ACEs I and ACE III covering West and Central Africa.  ACE II is facilitated by the Inter University Council for East Africa (IUCEA).

ACE I is on track to achieving all 5 Project Development Objective (PDO) Indicators:

ACE I Centers in Ghana are:

  • West Africa Centre for Cell Biology of Infectious Pathogens (WACCBIP); University of Ghana. 
  • West Africa Center for Crop Improvement (WACCI); University of Ghana. 
  • Regional Water and Environmental Sanitation Center, Kumasi (RWESCK), Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology. 

ACE III Impact (2019 – 2023) for West and Central Africa follows the successes marked in ACE I.  The World Bank has pre-announced the Call for Proposals for ACE III impact and the Africa Centers of Excellence for Development Impact (ACE III Impact) project. It is anticipated that a formal launch of a Call for Proposals would be in June 2018.  Eligible higher education institutions from participating countries in West and Central Africa are encouraged to submit proposals that address a regional Development Challenge through a focused program of postgraduate education and applied research.

This pre-announcement and other relevant information concerning the application introduces the anticipated project and shares a draft version of the Call for Proposals so that potential applicants can begin developing their proposals.  The call is open to all public and private universities (including technical universities) in Ghana with enrolment above 800 students who offer post graduate courses related to or responding to identified challenges in Agriculture, Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Health, Water and Sanitation, Construction, Energy, Extractives, Climate Change etc.