AfroScience Story by Aymen I. Idris

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AfroScience Story by Aymen I. Idris

A lament for the good old ways of conducting scientific research, and cautionary nudge to junior researchers in the times of a pandemic.

When I started my PhD studies at the turn of this century, I envisaged my time in research would be spent making observations, formulating hypotheses, designing and carrying out experiments and making discoveries – and eventually train the next generation of researchers to do the same.

A vision based on what scientists have done for millennia and the words of “African” wisdom from my late father:

carpenters make furniture & scientists perform experiments


So there I was toiling long and hard with my students in the lab for 5 years after gaining tenure. But, I had to give it up for an office life of juggling writing grants/papers and supervising/teaching duties.

Recently, I read an editorial on the role of basic scientific research in developing countries, and I started to wonder what the future holds for today’s early-career researchers in Africa.

Would the harsh reality of a career in science diminish their dream of a life of awe, wonder and first-hand thrill of conducting experiments and making new discoveries?

Or would they demand change, today?


Conflict Of Interest
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and they do not purport to reflect the policies, opinions, or views of the AfroScience Network platform.

This article has not been submitted, published or featured in any formal publications, including books, journals, newspapers, magazines or websites.

About author
Aymen Idris, PhD, is a research scientist currently based at the University of Sheffield, England, United Kingdom.
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