Call for Applications for Postgraduate Programmes at College of Medicine, University of Malawi

The University of Malawi established the Africa Center of Excellence in Public Health and Herbal Medicine (ACEPHEM) at the College of Medicine (CoM). ACEPHEM is funded by the Malawi Government with funding from the World Bank. The Center’s aim is to promote postgraduate education and training and research in the following areas: injuries, urban health, adolescent health and herbal medicine. As part of Component II of the Africa Centers of Excellence II Project, resources are now available to support high-flying in- coming masters African students with full tuition, approved research costs and a monthly stipend. Eligible applicants shall be females who:

  1. Obtained a first undergraduate degree of an average score not less than 65% in their final year of their studies;
  2. Have published at least one article in a scientific journal;
  3. Where journal publication is not available, should have presented an abstract or

    paper at an international conference or symposium;

  4. Must have obtained previous study grants or received academic honours;
  5. Meet all the academic and professional qualifications for admission into the

    University of Malawi-College of Medicine.

Fields of study
Applications are being sought to enter into any of the following programmes:

  1. MPhil- Public Health Sciences;
  2. Master of Science in Global Health Implementation.

Methods of Application

Eligible individuals can obtain more information on the fellowship and application forms from:
Prof Adamson S. Muula (

Due date: 30th March 2018

Call for Book Chapter Proposals: Addiction in Africa

A review of literature on addiction in Africa reveals that there is minimal scholarship on the
subject. For instance, currently there is apparently no comprehensive book on African
conceptions of addiction. In spite of this lack of academic reflection, reports on addiction in
Africa show that there is an increase in number of individuals addicted to drugs, alcohol,
gambling and the Internet. This book project is therefore set to fill this gap. This is an
interdisciplinary book calling on Philosophers, Linguists, Cultural Critiques, Public Health
Practitioners, Psychologists, Medical Doctors, Legal Practitioners and others to come
together and provide a perspective on this growing field of study.

Themes for the proposed book should include, but not limited to addressing the following
What is the African conception of addition?
How African folklores and songs reveal addiction?
What are the African terminologies for Addiction?
Is there an African Philosophy that can be used to explain addiction?
What is the received view of addiction in Africa?
Are young people more prone to addiction than older people?
What is the difference in gender on addiction?
How is addiction treated in Africa?
What is the prevalence of drug addiction in Africa?
What is the prevalence of alcohol addiction in Africa?
What is the prevalence of behavioural addiction in Africa?
What danger do technological addictions pose to Africa?
What is the prevalence of gambling addiction in Africa?
What are the differences and similarities between substance and behavioural addictions in
What are the moral and legal dimensions of addiction? Does addiction negate moral and
legal responsibility in African countries?

Submission of Abstracts
Interested contributors are encouraged to submit their chapter proposals to the editors of
this book, Dr Yamikani Ndasauka and Dr Grivas Kayange (Lecturer and Senior Lecturer:
Philosophy Department: Chancellor College: University of Malawi) at
or and copy to or

Important dates
25th February 2018 Dateline for submission of abstracts of not more than 300 words.
15th June 2018 Dateline for submission of chapters of not more than 6000
30th August 2018 Dateline for submission of revised chapters.

Proposed Publisher
Springer Publishers.

About the editors
Yamikani Ndasauka, PhD (Co-Editor) is a Philosopher with over 8 years of teaching and
research experience in philosophy, psychology and ethics. He has undertaken numerous
projects and published in a wide range of Psychology subjects such as addiction, cerebra
palsy and human cognition mainly employing quantitative methods. He has also developed
and psychometrically analyzed two measurement scales. Dr. Ndasauka has published in
international journals such as Frontiers in Psychology, Computers in Human Behavior,
Research in Developmental Disabilities and more recently in PlosOne. He holds a Doctorate
degree in Philosophy from the University of Science and Technology of China, a Master of
Research degree from the University of East Anglia, a Master of Arts degree from the
University of Leeds and a Bachelors degree from the University of Malawi; Chancellor
College. He is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at Chancellor College in
the University of Malawi. Dr. Ndasauka conducts research in multiple disciplines and
employs different research techniques and methodologies.

Grivas Muchineripi Kayange, PhD (Co-Editor) Is a senior lecturer and holds a PhD in
Philosophy from the Gregorian Pontifical University, Rome, Italy (2007). His research
interests focus on the logical relation between Theories/Policies and Practice within the
context of natural science, ethics (expert in Virtue Ethics), politics and religion. Some of his
publications include: Applying Karl Popper’s Logical Concept of Verisimilitude to Scientific
Models (2008), Understanding the Semantics of Chewa Proverbs in the Light of Contemporary
Philosophy of Language (Journal of African Cultural Studies, 2014), Metaphorical
conceptualization of disabilities in Malawi (Manual of Disabilities, Kenya, 2017, Umunthu
ethical foundations of animal protection in Malawi (JH 2017).

Opportunity for African Early Career Researchers/storytelling methodology training and network


iBali is an exciting new academic network led by the Open University in the UK and funded by the UK’s Arts and Humanities Research Council. It brings together leading African and other global experts in storytelling approaches, youth, urban issues and education – all with a commitment to alternative, creative and collaborative ways of surfacing and valuing knowledge. iBali intends to showcase, develop, share and apply methodological approaches using storytelling to address challenging issues in urban education systems in Sub-Saharan Africa. You can find out more about the network and its partners on our website ( and Twitter feed @iBaliNetwork.

In 2017-2018 iBali will host a funded programme of networking events and resources. These include a methodological development workshop in South Africa in March 2018, an interactive web-platform, mentoring support and a bid-writing workshop in Kenya in August 2018.

This is a call for expressions of interest for ECRs to attend the methodological development workshop in South Africa in March 2018. There are up to 10 funded places available (including travel, workshop attendance, accommodation and meals). The workshop will: focus on conceptualising, sharing and developing skills in storytelling methodologies; work with young people to test out and refine the methodologies; partner ECRs with experienced mentors and; pave the way for the development of collaborative research proposals.

We are looking for early career academics whose research focuses on issues of youth learning, education, schools, or urban challenges and opportunities in Africa (or, even better, a combination of these). If you have experience in participatory facilitation, using storytelling approaches in research or working creatively with young people we’d love to hear from you. If you don’t have specific experience in these areas but can demonstrate a commitment to the ideas, values and principles embedded in working and researching in this way, then please do apply.

If you would like to be considered for a place on the workshop, please send your CV (maximum 2 pages) and a letter outlining your interest in the workshop, your relevant experience and an indication of how you might use storytelling approaches in future research (maximum 2 pages) to by Friday 1st December.

Please note that as the purpose of the networking scheme is to support academics from, and institutions in, ODA-recipient countries, funding will only be available for applicants who are a national of an African country on this list and who can demonstrate (in their application) a commitment to developing an academic career in a country on this list. We have adopted a very broad definition of ‘early career researcher’, although applicants must have a Master’s degree as a minimum qualification. Please also note that if accepted, you must commit to being available Thursday 22nd – Thursday 29th March 2018 inclusive. If you have any questions about applying, please contact Dr Alison Buckler (network lead) on

Traditional and Complementary Medicine Workshop – College of Medicine, University of Malawi, October-November 2017

Traditional and Complementary Medicine Workshop

The College of Medicine through the African Centre of Excellence in Public Health and Herbal Medicine (ACEPHEM) is pleased to announce the introduction of the Certificate Course in Traditional and Complementary Medicines (TCM) for health professionals (HP) as follows:.

Dates: 30th October-10th, November 2017

Venue: College of Medicine, Mahatma Gandhi Campus, Blantyre

Facilitators: Experienced facilitators from College of Medicine, Malawi University of Science and Technology, Mzuzu University, Tubingen University (Germany), Pharmacy Medicines and Poisons Board, Malawi Bureau of Standards, National Herbarium and Botanical Gardens will share knowledge and experiences in TCM.

Workshop Coordinator: John Mponda, Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Pharmacognosy

Aim: The workshop is aimed at equipping the healthcare professionals with the knowledge and awareness of Traditional and Complementary Medicine.

Course objectives

By the end of this workshop, participants should be able to:
1.Demonstrate an understanding the foundations of Traditional and Complementary Medicine (TCM).
2.Demonstrate an understanding of the World Health Organization Strategy and Declarations on TCM and other policy frameworks in WHO AFRO and SADC.
3.Apply knowledge of pharmaceutical botany in understanding the problem of adulteration
4.Demonstrate an understanding of the link between herbal medicine and Western medicine on the aspect of Drug discovery
5.Demonstrate an understanding on Malawi’s draft Regulations and Guidelines on Traditional and Complementary Medicine formulated to safe and quality herbal medicines.
6.Demonstrate an understanding of herbal medicine pharmacovigilance and reporting of herbal medicine adverse effects and events.
7.Demonstrate an understanding of various types of dosage form presentation, preparations and Good manufacturing practices.
8.Demonstrate an understanding of the impact of Good Agricultural and Collecting Practices and environmental factors on the quality of herbal medicine with a special focus on content of active ingredient.

Workshop Methodology

Mainly interactive consisting of lectures, question and answer and discussion. Certificate in Traditional and Complementary Medicine (TCM) will be provided for those who complete workshop. All power-point presentations will also be provided by email to participants on daily basis.

Who should apply: This course is recommended to all healthcare professionals especially those dealing with patient diagnosis, prescribing, medicine administration, palliative care and dispensing, and those doing or interested to pursue a career in herbal medicine research.

Workshop fee: USD100 per participant. Course fees cover course material, and tea. The ACEPHEM has limited scholarships to cover the workshop fees of participants. These will be awarded on merit and on first come first serve basis.

Application Deadline: Applications should be submitted to (with a copy to no later than 20 October 2017. Use the application form on the ACEPHEM website ( ask from the emails above.

Call for Applications: 2 x Post-Doctoral Fellowships at Witz

We are seeking to recruit two post-doctoral fellows to join the Migration and Health Project Southern Africa (maHp) – a research project at the African Centre for Migration & Society (ACMS), Wits University.

1 x Post-doctoral fellowship: Migration and Health Project Southern Africa (maHp)
Involving a series of unique research and public engagement projects maHp aims to explore (and evaluate) ways to generate and communicate knowledge in order to improve responses to migration, health and wellbeing in the SADC region. Multiple disciplinary perspectives, mixed method approaches, and the involvement of various stakeholders – including migrants themselves – are central. Central areas of investigation link to issues of public health responses to migration; migration, labour and health; migration and health policy making; gender, health, sexuality and migration. Starting in February 2018 (negotiable), the successful applicant will join an interdisciplinary team of scholars exploring health and migration in southern Africa. With a home base in Johannesburg, post-doctoral fellows are encouraged to develop and participate in projects across the region.

1 x Post-doctoral fellowship: MoVE (method:visual:explore)
A key focus area within maHp is the development of visual and other involved methodologies to research the lived experiences of migrants in southern Africa. The MoVE project aims to integrate social action with research, and involves collaboration with migrant participants, existing social movements, qualified facilitators and trainers, and research students engaged in participatory research methods. This work includes the study and use of visual methods – including photography, narrative writing, participatory theatre, collage – and other visual and narrative approaches in the process of producing, analysing, and disseminating research data. These approaches to research facilitate story-telling and self-study, incorporating various auto ethnographic approaches. Central areas of investigation link to issues of social justice in relation to migration, with a specific focus on sexuality, gender, health, and policy. Starting in February 2018 (negotiable), the successful applicant will join an interdisciplinary team of scholars exploring knowledge production, research methodologies and ethics in relation to health and migration in southern Africa. With a home base in Johannesburg, post-doctoral fellows are encouraged to develop and participate in projects across the region.

Essential qualifications and experience: A PhD in a Migration & Displacement or an associated discipline; experience in developing and implementing health and migration research in southern Africa; competency in more than one regional language would be desirable. For the MoVE fellowship, experience in designing and implementing arts-based and/or visual methodologies in relation to migration and health in southern Africa is essential.

Timeframe: one year with possibility for renewal dependent on performance and availability of funding.

Remuneration: ZAR 220,000 per year, plus Wits medical aid and ZAR 10,000 research funding.

Application process: Please submit an application to Jo Vearey ( by Friday 13th October 2017.  Only short-listed applicants will be contacted and invited for interview in early November 2017.  Anticipated start-date:  1st February 2018 (negotiable).

Applications should include:

  • full CV
  • cover letter outlining your reasons for applying for the position
  • academic writing example
  • overview of experience working on migration and health in southern Africa
  • [for the MoVE fellowship] evidence of involvement in design and delivery of arts-based and/or visual research projects in southern Africa
  • details of two referees

Workshop Announcement and Call for Abstracts – Journal of Southern African Studies

Emerging scholars and new research in Southern Africa

The Centre for Social Research of the University of Malawi, in collaboration with the Journal of Southern African Studies (JSAS, UK), and the British Institute in Eastern Africa (BIEA, Nairobi), will host a three-day Early Career Writing Workshop on 16-20 July 2018 at Chancellor College in Zomba, Malawi. The aim of the workshop is to provide an opportunity for early career scholars and postdocs to present papers for discussion and eventual publication in JSAS. Participants will bring papers on various aspects of the Southern African region, JSAS’s mandate. The region embraces South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Angola and Mozambique; and occasionally, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar and Mauritius.

Fine more information at

Two young academics reflect upon their experience at the MedHums conference

We had the pleasure of attending the first ever medical humanities conference in Malawi. This conference explored the hybrid space of humanities and medicine.   We learnt so much and met a lot of people who are doing interesting work in medical humanities. The wide array of interdisciplinary papers presented tackled historic and contemporary issues in medicine from a humanities perspective. They also tried to pave a way forward in the African medical humanities scene.

The presentation panels were grouped according to common themes and disciplines. This grouping was not well-thought which resulted in papers clumped together according to superficial similarities; had the programming been based on scrutinisation of the abstracts, they would have been grouped using deeper similarities that transcended discipline. If we were all attending the same session, this would have been appropriate but because we were spread out in two panels this hindered interdisciplinary discussion because attendants went to panels grouped according to their discipline. For instance, they were three papers on mental health; one was in History, the other in Literature and one in Theology. These papers could have been grouped together instead being put in panels according to their discipline.

The casual vibe of the conference made it a good environment to foster ideas. The keynote speakers were masters in their fields and good orators which made their long presentations interesting and thought provoking. We, two recent graduates, rubbed shoulders with professors and academic masters in their field but we were able to speak as and ask questions though they were our equals. The audience was attentive during our presentations and gave us criticism that we could use to improve our papers. The opportunity to present our papers at an international conference was amazing and we would love for such opportunities to be found more often. However, as fledglings still finding our footing in the world of academia, it would be nice to have more rewards for our efforts. Young people in other ventures such as entrepreneurship and those starting NGOs are given more rewards and incentives as opposed to young researchers.

In the recent years, there has been an exponential growth of artists, NGOs, academics using humanities to solve problems in health. If the conference had been well-advertised we would have had more papers from Africans, and more Malawian attendees (who were not presenting) who were interested in the discussions because it connects to work they are already doing.

Writing the papers was hard because both of us have studied close to nothing about medical humanities in our degree programmes. There is little knowledge of medical humanities in a Malawian context so it felt like we were groping in the dark. But also, individual unsupervised research is something new to us.  As a recent graduate, to present in front of professors, doctors and other highly success people and get such a positive feedback was amazing. We are grateful for this opportunity.

Bongani Khoswe (right) presents her paper on the role of the church in mental health in Malawi

The papers we presented, one looked into how the church in Malawi has dealt with depression amongst its members and the other on how women with disability are portrayed in Malawian folklore; both fit into current debates in medical humanities. For some time now, NGOs and government have tried to explore the role existing structures, such as the church and community leaders, can play in solving problems in medical practice; this was reflected in the paper on depression. Though within this debate, this paper went in an unexplored direction which was the Church’s role in mental health.

Wongile Mbano (left) presents her paper on the disabled women in traditional folklore on the literature panel.

Due to the recent increase in attacks on people with albinism, NGOs and the government have tried to change the societies mind-set on people with disability by trying to get it to see them as people instead of “the other”. This paper scrutinises society’s attitudes on disability by dissecting their oral literature on disability.  We hope that in future there will be more training opportunities in medical humanities in Malawi, both at undergraduate and postgraduate level.


– Bongani Khoswe (Chanco graduate, theology) and Wongile Mbano (Chanco graduate, English literature)

The Ideas Tree…

At the conference, our friends at the Art and Global Health Center Africa organized an activity during the Creative Space to encourage participants to leave their thoughts, inspirations and sentiments about the medical humanities.

The concept of the “Ideas Tree” stems from a popular art installation form that has been used most recently by Yoko Ono, as a means to memorialize ideas and encourage anonymous expression.

The tree remained outside the Great Hall for the duration of the conference.

The banner for AGHCA (left) and the ideas tree and its ‘leaves’ (right)

Here is a full, unedited presentation of the ideas and sentiments left on the tree:


Inspired by something? Sparked by an idea? Hang it here!

  • #medical humanities critical, but loving❤ intellectual osmosis
  • presentation of Patricia Lund about albinism in genetics
  • Time management has been a great problem for health breaks but cross-fertilization of ideas from all corners of the world makes it a great gathering
  • Medical humanities can bring back what colonialism took away
  • New connection with different people who can work together to change the lives of communities


  • I want more to do with different art forms in mental health
  • Rebekah, the discussions on road safety accidents and how people understand “accidental”
  • How the Bible has been interpreted in academia
  • It has inspired me to return to research on something I am interested in and to fight for my research space
  • The place we place the tree after it has held our leaves matters – as it is of our ecosystem in a large way!


  • Find out who caused the AIDS epidemic? Bring them to Justice!
  • Medicine is such a source of power… we need to acknowledge this more in its practice – to have our ongoing conversation about what it looks like to guard against abuse and promote the goal of human flourishing.
  • Something is Lwanda’s point on going back to lost cultural aspects to bring back order in society. The use of local dances of cultures to achieve development.
  • What? ENGAGE How? WONDER Why? Innovate… when?
  • Focus and network


  • I am very impressed with Anna’s presentation on albinos and I think we need more awareness campaigns in Malawi about albinos.
  • To pioneer a medical humanities programme at my university
  • Health being used for weight loss can lead to shame/guilt if people don’t lose… albino killings may hang on for longer.. road accidents and disease origin in myth
  • Empowerment of traditional herbalists – updating info


  • This conference brings together medical and humanities to achieve one goal.
  • How did we fail to discuss witchcraft during this conference??? It is holding our people back.
  • Changing the world is simple as dancing to the tune of our soul. We can change our communities with simple things as dancing for the sick.
  • The humanities department should offer volunteer opportunities.


  • This conference has inspired me to finish our research paper and overcome the obstacles.
  • Suicides among the Catholics is low because of the “confessions” members make to the priest.
  • We need to teach doctors stories about medicine to tell patients.
  • Taking medical students to rural communities to learn from different perspectives – a great idea from the College of Medicine
  • Presentation of John Lwanda on poet in context of medical humanities. I learned that arts has power to change.


  • It’s been fascinating to see the arts influencing what should be a predominantly science field (health).
  • ARTS & HEALTH… Artistic work must travel beyond borders of entertainment to represent health issues in our society
  • Poetry recital in the context of medical humanities
  • The youth should be involved in economic generating activities so as they should not only depend on being employed… PS
  • I have learnt about the relationship between health/medicine and humanity and its my role to let others know about the unknown facts which people ain’t aware of.


  • Have a long rest
  • The conference has inspired me to think in a multidisciplinary way and seriously consider the collaboration of arts intervention in public health.
  • I’ve been inspired to look further into social research opportunities. Reach the people with the issues
  • I have been motivated to do research in the area of visuals linked to health and pottery.


  • More work needs to be done with giving rural communities a voice to do their own health
  • We need more funding from within our governments to push ideas and not rely on foreign donors to do what we should be doing for ourselves.
  • Lives as a tool for research – cool
  • Encouragement that there is space for multiple approaches in dialogue here: easy to belong.
  • The use of local resources to explore local issues could be worth advocating for. Use of local arts… B.


  • Bringing together people from various or diverse backgrounds to discuss about on social themes.
  • there are not a lot of students here
  • The chance to meet with pioneers in the field of medical humanities
  • addiction and mental health… these are two issues that need more attention in Malawi
  • To find a creative way to share the beautiful stories of my friends, family who died of AIDS. The world needs to know them…

The Oral Literature Research Programme – Fieldwork with the Department of English at Chanco

The Hayter Committee at the University of Edinburgh offered a grant, which would support fieldwork in Malawi. I partnered up with the Department of English at Chancellor College to provide staff and students affiliated with the M.A. program in Oral Literature on 4 medical-humanities field excursions.

On 31 July, we paid a visit to the The Oral Literature Research Programme in Chileka Blantyre, where we met Dr Moya Malamusi, an ethnologist, cultural anthropologist and musician, and Professor Gerhard Kubic, an ethnomusicologist and professor at the University of Vienna.

This was an extraordinary experience for all of us. In other cultures, music is a distinct art form which is studied separately from literature. We learned in this trip about the Chileka forms of music and how it intersects with storytelling and healing.

Professor Kubic plays the ‘kalimba’, a small instrument which creates a soothing and therapeutic sound

It was an introduction for me about the history of storytelling forms in Malawi but also an opportunity to recognize that this centre is one of the few places that is preserving audio recordings and instruments which are now endangered. It has opened my eyes to the importance of preservation of oral literature and traditional music.

Chisomo Kalinga, postdoc, Centre of African Studies, University of Edinburgh

The field Trip to Dr. Malamusi’s Oral Literature Centre in Chileka

The field trip was fun and very educative. Looking through their rich library and listening to both Dr Malamusi and his colleague (who are wells of knowledge on Malawian Oral Literature) taught me a lot.  I learnt about Oral literature research and the history of music in Malawi. The part I enjoyed the most on this trip was when we went to the Jacaranda Museum of Ethnographic Objects. There were so many musical objects; most of them were Malawian instruments and some from other parts of Africa. Up until this moment I did not know that we had this many music instruments in Malawi.

Dr Malamusi teaches Wongile Mbano about the instruments in the ethnographic museum.

I have not been exposed to that many indigenous Malawian musical instruments. Because of that I assumed that we did not have many musical indigenous instruments. Just by looking at the instruments, I could see that there were many similarities in musical instruments we have in here Malawi and to those of other African countries. Dr. Malamusi’s colleague explained that the technology of used to make some of these instruments was lost on the new generation. This statement made me realise our people had the mastery and technology to build complex instruments that made beautiful music such as the Malimba.  At the end Dr Malamusi’s colleague played the nsansi and sang for a bit. It was beautiful and soothing to listen to. We closed the visit with a video of the Kachamba Brothers.

Wongile Mbano,  recent B.A. English graduate, Chancellor College, UniMa


Museum of Ethnographic Objects

An initial step in conducting research is in understanding the research process, which involves delicate procedures of data-gathering and methods of recording in the field. Through the years processes inevitably change as new technologies evolve. Striking a balance between techniques of methodology, the Museum of Ethnographic Objects in Chileka, Malawi, maintains solid awareness of the value of ‘old’ disciplines while catalyzing contemporary technologies in the digital age to ensure a disappearing world of oral literature is recorded.

Instruments on display at the Jacaranda Museum of Ethnographic Objects at Chileka, Blantyre

The Museum is interesting in terms of its intersectionality and its temporality. Various facets of culture are manifested, highlighting that storytelling interlinks with music which interlinks healing practice showing how each has elements of the singular and of the collective ‘oral literature’ incorporated. The archival timeline spans from 1960s to the present day – black and white photographs show the rituals of the Gule wa Mkulu while hanging above these is an instrument made from a plastic carton by a small boy a number of months ago.

Walter Banjamin’s ‘aura’ is evoked in Chileka – an authentic feeling surrounds the objects, both material and abstract, creating a sense of measured endurance, symbolically referring to the people/community as much as to the survival of the objects themselves. The space inside the Museum and its library stands less as a space seeking revival as it does a space of remembrance. While it is at best puzzling to think that the TV took over storytelling practices around the fire, it is rather more conducive to think of the space of oral literature as an evolution in process – the art of yesterday becomes artifact, but rather than buried it is memoried and can in fact be sourced in contemporary art forms of today.

Joanna Woods, Lecturer, Department of English, Chancellor College, UniMa