Download Internet Explorer 8 or Firefox 3 now!
Kenyan Scientist and Oxford Honorary Fellow Wins the African Union National Young Scientist Award
Dr Abdisalan Mohamed Noor, a Wellcome Trust - funded scientist at the KEMRI Centre for Geographic Medicine Research-Coast and honorary Fellow of Nuffield Department of Medicine, University of Oxford is this year’s winner of African Union Young Scientist National Award for Life and Earth Sciences.
This prestigious award is part of the African Union Scientific Awards Programme’ initiated in 2007 by the African Union (AU) Heads of State and Governments with support from key development partners.
Noor, 33 years old, earned the award from the AU for his extensive and significant contribution to providing the research-based evidence necessary to develop new maps of malaria risk and intervention coverage to guide malaria control policies in Kenya and across the African region.
In 2005, Dr. Noor completed his PhD training which focused on the accessibility of health care facilities in Kenya. In 2007, he received funding from the Wellcome Trust (UK) to study transmission of malaria in Africa and appointed as Honorary Fellow of Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Oxford the same year.
The awards celebrates the achievements of African scientists, raises the profile of science and technology and builds a scientific culture amongst African citizens encouraging the science community and the public to participate in scientific engagements towards addressing critical problems in Africa.
Prof Crispus Kiamba, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Technology, Kenya credited Dr Noor ‘for raising the bar for research excellence in Kenya through his scientific accomplishments and creating visible scientific impact in the country.’
On receiving the award Dr Noor said, ‘I have been fortunate to be based and trained at a world class research centre in Africa working with world class scientists. This has provided me with the frame of reference to know what is expected of me as an international scientist and the inspiration necessary to reach for the very best in my field. I am both honored and humbled to receive the 2009 African Union Young scientist’s award’
Dr Sam Kinyanjui, Head of capacity building and training, echoed his comments, ‘The award from the AU is not only just a reward to Noor, but also to the programme as it signifies that we are meeting our mandate of producing good quality African researchers capable of addressing problems facing the continent. We are actually doing this quite successfully in Africa.’
The global importance of Noor’s contribution is an indication that Africa is also raising a cadre of research scientists able to conduct high quality research with an aim of improving the living standards of people on the continent.
Additionally, the Director of KEMRI Dr Solomon Mpoke said, ‘it is important to recognize such achievements meant to send a clear message that Africa is blessed with brilliant scientists whose work will improve the living standards of the people of the continent, and indeed, elsewhere globally. KEMRI is honored and privileged to be part of this prestigious award and we salute Noor on this great achievement.’
About Dr. Abdisalan Mohamed Noor
Abdisalan Mohamed Noor (known as Noor) graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Surveying from the University of Nairobi in 1999. Following a GIS internship at the International Research on Livestock Institute he joined the KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Programme in 2000 and was involved in developing a spatial infrastructure of health services in Kenya. He completed his PhD on spatial models of access to and use of government health services in Kenya in 2005 with the Open University, UK and the University of Oxford. He was awarded a Wellcome Trust Research Training fellowship in 2007 and was appointed as Honorary Fellow of Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Oxford the same year. His research interests include investigating the spatial and socio-economic determinants of access to and use of health interventions among rural African communities, particularly understanding and modeling the dynamics of insecticide treated net uptake. Noor is an honorary lecturer at the University of Nairobi, Department of Geospatial Engineering & Space Technology, and Technical Advisor to the Kenyan Government’s National Malaria Control Programme and supports other Ministries of Health in the region notably in Somalia, Djibouti and Northern Sudan.