Prof. Bekele Gutema

Director, Addis Ababa University Graduate Programs Office



The Directorate of Graduate Programs of Addis Ababa University has a long standing support from Sida. Without the support of Sida it would have been impossible for some PhD students to complete their dissertation since their research required working in well-equipped laboratories of universities in Europe, North America and so on. In the year that is ending shortly we have sent over 90 students and we are still sending as long as the fund allows.

By making reference to the experiences of the last few years,it is proposedhere that 288 students will travel internationally, each for three months. Although Sida has generously offered AAU to send students for six months within the given budget limits for AAU, AAU opts to maintain the previous tradition of sending students each for three months so that as many students as possible will have the opportunity of visiting international research facilities and consultations within the bounds of the fund allocated for AAU by Sida.

The support of Sida for external examiners and professors who do block teaching is also pivotal in maintaining the quality of our programs. It is playing a key role in capacity building. The support given in the areas of teaching-learning and quality enhancement hopefully will address the issue of improved learning-learning process.

Ethiopia is one of the countries where females and people with disabilities have been neglected for too long. This has been acknowledged by Sida and they have been receiving some support. As there are a large number of these students on AAU campuses and the support from Sida is limited, AAU extends the support of Sida to these students on a competitive basis.

Inviting visiting professors, external examiners and short term international stay for in-house PhD candidates and supporting Female and Disability MA students.

  • Visiting Professors & External Examiners

In this report from July 07, 2019 – December 31, 2019 period, SIDA funds for external examiners have been transferred to student visits because with what was allocated initially we could invite only a very limited number of students. It is the fact that the Government has given the university the permission to use regular budget to invite external examiners that enabled us to transfer these funds for external examiners to students’ visits. Funds for 8 visiting professors will be used for inviting professors possibly for the IT Doctoral program.

  • Short-term International stay for PhD candidates

Addis Ababa University addresses the request of its PhD students who ask for research visit in order to enrich their research by the state of the art laboratories and equipment that are not available in the country and their desire to work closely with their advisors abroad for close supervision and support.

In the implementation of this, GPO has planned to send 25 students in the project period 01 July 2018-30 June 2019 for this purpose. However, due to several reasons, only 18 students were able to travel abroad to use modern laboratories and get close assistance from their advisors until 30 June 2019.  Since the director office has got a permission to use the remaining balance, 5 PhD students were travelled from 01 July 2019- 31 December 2019.

The University finances the travel of these PhD students for short-term exposure to universities abroad when their departments or program units recommend such travel as necessary for enriching the research of the PhD students. This sub program was assisted by SIDA and a total of Birr 500,417.97 was utilized for this purpose.

Table1. List of PhD Students who travelled 01 July 2019- 31 December 2019 project period

No Name of PhD Students PhD Students home Hosting country, university & Unite ,purpose & time
College /Institution Department /School Center Country University of Bradford College/Institution


Purpose Schedule/Stay time
1 Mr. Awoke Atinafu Adam IPSS Peace and security Studies New Zealand University of Otago   Research activity September 05, 2019 to December 01, 2019
2 Mr. Birhan Aynalem Ayele Institute  of Biotechnology Institute  of Biotechnology  Chile University of Chile   Research activity September 20, 2019 to December 21, 2019.
3 Mr.Abay Yimere Semaw CDS Center for Environmental and Developmental Studies USA University of Massachusetts Boston   Research activity October 28, 2019 to January 28, 2020
4 Mr. Lopiso Dessalegn Tirore CHS Microbiology, immunology and Parasitology USA Ohio State University   Research activity November 01, 2019 to Junuary31, 2020
5 Mr. Yohannes Tesfaye Endale EIWR Water and  Health Belgium Ghent University   Research activity December 25, 2019 to March 23, 2020


Summery for short Term International Stay of PhD Students

From July 07, 2019 – December 31, 2019

Country Student No.
Europe 1
S. America 1
Oceania 1


  • Female and Special Needs Graduate Students’ Scholarship

The number of female students in the graduate program has been very small at AAU. In order to alleviate this problem, AAU has launched the graduate female scholarship scheme supported by SIDA.  The scholarship has been fruitful as it has now raised the number of female students in the graduate program from 10 to around 20% of the total graduate student population. The scholarship opportunities target MA or MSc female students and also students with disabilities that have good academic achievements, and as a result who are likely to join the PhD program in the future.

During this budget period out of the total of 853 female students, 50 female and 10 students with disability are scholarship awardees. At present we have 100 female students and 22 students with disability who are the beneficiaries of SIDA funds. The budget allocated and used for this purpose is Birr 645,000.00. The screening and identification of the students with critical need to get financial support are those who can sustain their studies without taking longer time since some of the students had to present their evidences from their home town out of Addis or different regions.

Thus, the entire selection was completed and the pace of utilization will be enhanced as of this month. With regard to this sub title, the large number of candidates in the female scholarship schemes was a major problem that needs more attention since the number of applicants is increasing significantly with the increase of the female students in the tertiary education system of the country.