Introducing the BIEA

The British Institute in Eastern Africa has been active since 1960 and has its research centre  with accommodation, lecture facilities, work space and reference library in Nairobi, Kenya. The Institute is a registered charity which exists to promote research in all the disciplines in the humanities and social sciences within the wider region of eastern Africa. It offers financial support , affiliation services and logistical assistance to research projects, and runs a graduate attachment scheme. The Institute publishes a regular newsletter as well as the journal Azania: archaeological research in Africa and the Journal of Eastern African Studies.

Membership is open to all and we would be delighted if you would join us.


Participant Call: Virtual Sandpits 2021

The British Academy is inviting applications from researchers in the humanities and social sciences wishing to participate in international virtual sandpits in February 2021. The virtual sandpits will be framed around the themes of ‘Just Transitions’, ‘Global (Dis)Order’, and ‘What is a good city?’. 

Through these virtual sandpits the Academy wishes to engender new thinking, develop interdisciplinary collaborations, and further international engagement with a particular international policy and practice focus.   

The virtual sandpits will be designed to be interactive and free-thinking experiences where a diverse range of participants and perspectives will be brought together. The idea is to develop an immersive and intensive opportunity to develop collaborative thinking and construct innovative approaches to the themes set out above.

There will be three virtual sandpits related to the above themes. Each sandpit will have three sessions of a maximum of two hours each. In order to stimulate collaboration and networking, small-scale research funding will be made available after the virtual sandpits, which participants can apply for competitively. The Academy expects there to be around £250,000 available in total across the three themes and the Academy intends to provide opportunities across all three themes. 

Eligibility requirements 
For the purpose of this virtual sandpit, participants must have a doctorate (or equivalent research experience). 

  • Participants are welcome from any eligible UK or international university or research institute.  
  • Participants must have fluency in spoken and written English.   
  • Participants must be able to participate fully in the virtual sandpits. This includes access to the internet and a functioning device that enables voice and video communication. Sandpits are intensive activities and participants will be required to be able to attend throughout.  

Application process
Applications must be submitted online using the British Academy’s Grant Management System (GMS), Flexi-Grant®.

The deadline for submissions is Wednesday 16 December 2020 (17.00 UK time).

Contact details
Please contact [email protected] for further information.

Find out more

Funding Call: Education Research in Conflict and Crisis – Bilateral Research Chairs

The British Academy is inviting proposals to support bilateral partnership research chairs delivering a programme of institutional strengthening on education research in conflict and crisis. 

This call is supported by the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and forms one part of a wider Education Research in Conflict and Protracted Crisis (FCDO ERICC) programme.

The main objectives of the chairs will be to:

  • Develop and expand the research strength of their institutions and more broadly their impact nationally, regionally and internationally in the field of education research on conflict and crisis;
  • Develop the institutions’ ability to support, foster and build strong education research cultures that can be sustained over the long-term;
  • Enhance the support for masters and doctoral students;
  • Create research career pathways for early and mid-career researchers;
  • Develop, retain and attract researchers to work with their institutions in the field of education research on conflict and crisis;
  • Develop strong and tangible partnerships between research institutions through the bilateral research chair model;
  • Engage with the FCDO ERICC programme and relevant Country Research Teams to contribute to the overall objectives of the FCDO ERICC programme through their activities;
  • Work with the wider FCDO ERICC programme across these objectives.

Eligibility requirements
The bilateral research chair application must be submitted by a named applicant in partnership with two named institutions, at least one of which must be from institutions in the Middle East, Eastern Africa, Western Africa, Myanmar and Bangladesh. The awarding of a research chair is a full-time appointment and research chairs are required to spend half their time in each of the institutions constituting the bilateral research chair.

All projects must be ODA-eligible. Only proposals which aim to support the economic development and welfare of countries on the OECD DAC list will be supported under this call.

Value and duration
Awards of up to £555,000 over three years are available.

Application process
Applications must be submitted online using the British Academy’s Grant Management System (GMS), Flexi-Grant®.

The deadline for submissions and institutional approval is Wednesday 20 January 2021 at 17.00 (UK time).

Contact details
Please contact [email protected] for further information.