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Fellowships, scholarships and bursaries

The Aubrey Sheiham Evidence-based Health Care in Africa Leadership Award
Cochrane Complementary Medicine Field Bursary Scheme
The Cochrane Collaboration Visiting Fellowship (now discontinued)

Please also see the Cochrane Collaboration Funding Initiatives page for more funding opportunities.

Also see section 2.5 Fellowships, scholarships and bursaries of the Policy Manual.

Aubrey Sheiham Evidence-based Health Care in
Africa Leadership Award

Aubrey Sheiham, BDS, PhD, DHC

Aubrey Sheiham BDS, PhD, DHC was a dental epidemiologist who was inspired and encouraged by Archie Cochrane to question many of the practices in medicine and dentistry. His main commitment was to improving the health of populations in underdeveloped countries and challenging dental establishments to be far more critical. The misuse of health care resources has more serious ethical and health implications in underdeveloped countries because they are generally inadequate. Prof Sheiham considered that supporting and training key health personnel in the concepts of Cochrane will improve the effectiveness and efficiency of health care. Since 2001, through the generosity of Prof Sheiham and his wife Helena, Cochrane researchers from low- and middle-income countries have been funded and supported each year to complete a Cochrane Review on a topic relevant to their region, and to cascade relevant knowledge about Cochrane and evidence-based health care (EBHC) to their local networks.

General information and requirements

Since February 2014, the scholarship has evolved into a new award focusing on leadership in EBHC: The Aubrey Sheiham EBHC in Africa Leadership Award. This award will be offered annually by Cochrane to an individual from Africa to support the conduct and dissemination of a high-impact Cochrane Review focusing on a topic relevant to resource-constrained settings. The award is administered by Cochrane South Africa (SA).

In addition to undertaking and disseminating the review findings, the awardee will be expected to support capacity development by mentoring a novice author from Africa in conducting the review. The awardee and mentee will receive support to attend up to two face-to-face meetings, to ensure progress and provide mentoring during the review process. The meetings will take place at the most appropriate site to bring the team together - either at Cochrane SA, or another location identified by the awardee.

The preferred recipient will:

  • be an experienced Cochrane Review author (at least one published review) based in Africa;
  • have demonstrated commitment to mentoring others in EBHC;
  • have agreed to support a named novice author from Africa as part of their author review team; and,
  • have identified a  review topic of significant importance to people living in resource-limited settings.

The awardee will be expected to:

  • have agreed a review topic with the relevant Cochrane Review Group before submitting an application;
  • prepare a Cochrane Review during the tenure of the Award - the timeline will be agreed by the awardee, the Cochrane SA team and Cochrane Review Group;
  • mentor a novice Cochrane author on the agreed review topic; and,
  • implement a dissemination strategy for the published review.

The award covers:

  • attendance by the awardee at an annual Cochrane Colloquium (travel, accommodation and registration);
  • the costs of up to two face-to-face meetings of up to 10 days duration for the awardee and his/her mentee; and,
  • The cost of travel, subsistence, visa (if needed) and accommodation for  a period of up to one month at Cochrane SA, or another appropriate site for dedicated work time on the review.

The awardee is expected to ensure that he/she has medical insurance cover for any travel undertaken related to the award.

The application must include the following documentation:

  • full curriculum vitae (with three references) and a clear outline of work already done on systematic reviews, including experience with quantitative data;
  • a motivation letter indicating how the applicant would benefit from the award;
  • a description of a dissemination strategy for the published review (including potential stakeholders and dissemination methods);
  • a summary of a suggested review topic- up to 500 words explaining the relevance to resource-limited  communities and the potential impact;
  • confirmation from the relevant Cochrane Review Group that the topic has been accepted;
  • confirmation that the applicant has identified a suitable mentee; and,
  • a signed statement from the applicant’s head of department or manager, that they are aware of this application and agree to release the applicant to work on this review during the course of the year.

Application and selection process

Cochrane SA establishes and administers the yearly timetable for advertising and selecting the Sheiham awardee. Once this has been decided, the Cochrane SA circulates information about the requirements and application deadlines to Cochrane entities and e-mail lists, and an announcement is posted on the ‘Cochrane Opportunities’ page of the Cochrane website. Applications are reviewed by a selection panel chaired by the Director of Cochrane SA, whose members are drawn mainly from African countries.

Timetable for applications for the Sheiham Award

January: Call for applications opens.

NOTE: Applicants MUST have already agreed a review topic with the relevant Cochrane Review Group before submitting their application.

31 July: Deadline for applications.

31 August: Announcement of the Award winner.

Applications should be submitted to Joy Oliver at

Queries can be sent to Charles Wiysonge at

Former Scholarship Recipients

winner Lawrence Mbuagbaw

2014: Lawrence Mbuagbaw (Cameroon)

Tambe J, Mbuagbaw L. Antiretroviral resistance testing in treatment-naïve people living with HIV (Protocol). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2015, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD006495. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006495.pub3

Anju Pradhan Sinha

2013: Anju Pradhan Sinha was awarded the Scholarship in 2012, but was not able to take it up until 2013.

Sinha A, Sazawal S, Pradhan A, Ramji S. Chlorhexidine skin care for the prevention of infection in term neonates (Protocol). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2009, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD007835. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD007835.].

2012: There was no Aubrey Sheiham Scholar in 2012.

2011: Chunjie Li (China)

1. Li C, Lv Z, Shi Z, Zhu Y, Wu Y, Li L. Periodontal therapy for the management of cardiovascular disease in patients with chronic periodontitis (Protocol). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2011, Issue 7. Art. No.: CD009197. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD009197.

2. Li C, Wang Y, Lv Z, Jia Y, Wang S, Shi Z, Chen X, Zhou X. Effect of periodontal treatments on blood pressure (Protocol). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2011, Issue 11. Art. No.: CD009409. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD009409.

photo of Martha Eliya 2010 Scholarship winner

2010: Martha Eliya (Malawi)

Eliya MC, Banda GW, Primary closure versus delayed closure for non bite traumatic wounds within 24 hours post injury. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2010 (Protocol for a Cochrane Review), Issue 7. Art. No.: CD008574. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD008574.

2009: Chibuzo Odigwe (Nigeria)

Odigwe CC, Smedslund G, Ejemot-Nwadiaro RI, Anyanechi CC, Krawinkel MB. Supplementary vitamin E, selenium, cysteine and riboflavin for preventing kwashiorkor in preschool children in developing countries. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2010, Issue 4. Art. No.: CD008147. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD008147.pub2.

2008: There was no Aubrey Sheiham Scholar in 2008.

2007 sheiham scholar

2007: Janaki Vidanapathirana (Sri Lanka)

Vidanapathirana J, Randeniya M, Operario D. Interventions for reduction of stigma in people with HIV/AIDS (Protocol for a Cochrane Review). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD006735. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006735.

2006:  Belen Dofitas (The Philippines)

Chuh AAt, Dofitas BL, Comisel GG, Reveiz K, Sharma V, Garner SE, Chu F. Interventions for pityriasis rosea. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD005068. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD005068.pub2.


2004/5:  Yanina Sguassero (Argentina)  

1. Sguassero Y, de Onis M, Carroli G. Community-based supplementary feeding for promoting the growth of young children in developing countries. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2005, Issue 4. Art. No.: CD005039.DOI: 10.1002/14651858 CD005039.pub2.

2. Sguassero Y, Booker D, Dennis J, Orellano A, Abalos E. Supplementary feeding with nutritional education for caregivers for promoting growth and development in young children in developing countries. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD006509. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006509.


2003:  Mansur Rabiu (Nigeria)

Rabiu M, Alhassan M, Ejere H. Environmental sanitary interventions for preventing active trachoma. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 4. Art. No.: CD004003. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD004003.pub3.

2002:  Karin Schioler (Grenada) 

1. Schioler KL, Samuel M, Wai KL. Vaccines for preventing Japanese encephalitis (Cochrane Review). In: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD004263. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD004263.pub2.

2. Schioler KL, McCarty CW. Vaccines for preventing dengue infection. (Protocol for a Cochrane Review). In: The Cochrane Library, Issue 1, 2004. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

2001:  Charles Shey Wiysonge (The Cameroon)

1. Shey Wiysonge CU, Brocklehurst P, Sterne JAC. Vaginal disinfection during labour for reducing the risk of mother-to-child transmission of HIV infection (Cochrane Review). In: The Cochrane Library, Issue 3, 2002. Oxford: Update Software, Ltd.

2. Shey Wiysonge CU, Brocklehurst P, Sterne JAC. Vitamin A supplementation for reducing the risk of mother-to-child transmission of HIV infection (Cochrane Review). In The Cochrane Library, Issue 3, 2002. Oxford: Update Software, Ltd.


Cochrane Complementary Medicine Field Bursary Scheme

General information

The Bursary Scheme is offered by the Cochrane Complementary Medicine Field, Center for Integrative Medicine, University of Maryland, and made possible through funds from the National Institutes of Health, National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. The purpose of this bursary scheme is to ensure that reviews relevant to complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) (see below) are completed and published in The Cochrane Library. The bursary scheme funds are to be used either to help support the conversion of a CAM-related Cochrane protocol into a full Cochrane review or to help support a major update (see below) of an existing review. Only Cochrane authors who have already registered CAM-related protocols/reviews with a Cochrane Review Group will be eligible for funding.

Funding offered

  • Two review proposals in the amount of $5,000 USD each will be funded annually. The funding must be paid directly to the individual bursary recipient; it cannot be paid to the recipient's institution.

Eligibility requirements

  • The review must be registered with a Cochrane Review Group, and the relevant protocol/review must already be published in The Cochrane Library.
  • The topic of the review must relate to CAM (see below).
  • Bursaries will be targeted to reviews for which substantial progress has already been made, and whose completion has been stalled due to a lack of funding.
  • Updates will only be considered if a substantial amount of new information will be added, or if there will be important changes to the methodology, or important changes to the scope of the review or its conclusions. For updates to be considered, the updated review should meet the ‘Criteria for a new citation version of a review’, as described in section 3.2 of the Cochrane Reviewer’s Handbook (

Proposal outline

Applications should include the following:

  • Completed application form (required).
  • Letter of support from Cochrane Review Group through which the protocol has been registered (optional). Applications will be evaluated based primarily on the submitted application forms (using the assessment criteria below). However, letters of support from Review Groups may also be provided, particularly if such letters would include additional supporting information, not already included in the application form, which might influence assessments.


Proposals will be rated on three criteria:

  • Importance and relevance to CAM.
  • Assessment of the likelihood that the funding would insure completion and publication of a full review from a protocol or update of an existing review.
  • Perceived need for the funding to complete the review.

Reviews relevant to Traditional Chinese Medicine, a primary focus of research at the Center for Integrative Medicine, University of Maryland, are encouraged.

Each proposal will be rated by two representatives from the Cochrane Complementary Medicine Field, both with a sound knowledge of both CAM and systematic reviews.

Topic parameters

Complementary medicine includes all such practices and ideas that are outside the domain of conventional medicine in several countries and defined by its users as preventing or treating illness, or promoting health and wellbeing. These practices complement mainstream medicine by 1) contributing to a common whole; 2) satisfying a demand not met by conventional practices; and 3) diversifying the conceptual framework of medicine.

The list of Complementary Medicine Field topics comprises the entire spectrum of heath delivery mechanisms, including treatments that a person largely administers to him or herself (e.g. botanicals, nutritional supplements, health food, meditation, magnetic therapy); treatments that providers administer (e.g. acupuncture, massage therapy, reflexology, laser therapy, balneotherapy, chiropractic and osteopathic manipulations, certain types of psychological counselling, naprapathy); and treatments that a person administers to him or herself under the periodic supervision of a provider (e.g. yoga, biofeedback, Tai Chi, homeopathy, hydrotherapy, Alexander therapy, nutritional therapy, Ayurveda).

In addition to the CM treatments listed in the above paragraph, CM interventions also include Qi Gong, Doman Delcato patterning, Anthroposophical medicine, Unani medicine, Traditional African Medicine, Bach flower remedies, clinical ecology, colon cleansing or irrigation, and music or sound therapy. CM diagnostic techniques, a subgroup in the list, include iridology, kinesiology, Vega testing, biofunctional diagnostic testing, electro-acupuncture by Voll, and hair analysis.

Recipients of 2006 awards

  • Jasvinder Singh, for the Cochrane Musculoskeletal Group review ‘Chondroitin for osteoarthritis’.
  • Taixiang Wu, for the Cochrane Acute Respiratory Infections Group review ‘Chinese medicinal herbs for the common cold’.

Recipients of 2007 awards

  • Suzanne Grant, for the Cochrane Metabolic and Endocrine Disorders Group review ‘Chinese herbal medicine for impaired glucose tolerance or impaired fasting glucose’.
  • James Tacklind, for the Cochrane Prostate Group review ‘Serenoa repens for benign prostatic hyperplasia’.

Recipients of 2008 awards

  • Anna Lee, for the Cochrane Anaesthesia Group review 'Stimulation of the wrist acupuncture point P6 for preventing postoperative nausea and vomiting'.
  • John Deare, for the Cochrane Musculoskeletal Group review ' Acupuncture for treating fibromyalgia'.

Recipients of 2009 awards

  • Kalpana Sridharan, for the Cochrane Metabolic and Endocrine Disorders Group review, ' Ayurvedic treatments for diabetes mellitus'.
  • Gabriele Dennert for the Cochrane Gynaecological Cancer Group review 'Selenium for preventing cancer'.

Recipients of 2010 awards

  • Jeanette Ezzo, for the Cochrane Pain, Palliative, and Supportive Care Group review 'Acupuncture-point stimulation for chemotherapy-induced nausea or vomiting'.
  • Jianping Liu, for the Cochrane Metabolic and Endocrine Disorders Group review 'Chinese herbal medicines for type 2 diabetes mellitus'.

Recipients of 2011 awards

  • Melainie Cameron for the Cochrane Musculoskeletal Group review 'Herbal therapy for treating osteoarthritis'.
  • Xiaoshu Zhu for the Cochrane Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group review 'Chinese herbal medicine for menopausal symptoms'

Information about the 2012 CAM Field bursary scheme will be announced on CCINFO and posted on this web page during the latter half of 2012.

The Cochrane Collaboration Visiting Fellowship (discontinued in October 2010)

The Cochrane Collaboration Steering Group (CCSG) introduced a Visiting Fellowship in 2004, as part of a programme to facilitate quality processes surrounding the production of Cochrane Reviews. The Fellowship was open to all those working (employed or honorary) in a Cochrane group (i.e. a Review Group, a Centre, a Field/Network, or a Methods Group) towards producing, updating, disseminating or promoting the accessibility of Cochrane Reviews.  

In October 2010 the CCSG re-evaluated this Fellowship, and agreed that it should be withdrawn, and that the monies used to support it would be better directed towards some of the Collaboration's more contemporary quality improvement initiatives.

Visiting Fellowship Recipients

: Karishma Busgeeth, Trials Search Co-ordinator, HIV/AIDS Cochrane Review Group: To develop the HIV/AIDS trial register [report].

2005: Phil Wiffen, Associate Director, UK Cochrane Centre: To help with training at the Chinese Cochrane Centre [report].

2006: Alain Mayhew, Review Group Co-ordinator, Effective Practice and Organisation of Care Group: To train the staff at the new EPOC satellite, and work with related Cochrane Review Groups and Fields/Networks to develop policies around overlapping and common reviews [report].

2007: Michele Savaris, Review Group Co-ordinator, Sexually Transmitted Diseases Group: To learn about the skills needed to co-ordinate a new Cochrane Review Group [report].

2008/09: Natthaleeya Narash, Administrator, Thai Cochrane Network: To develop better dissemination strategies for promoting The Cochrane Collaboration and access to Cochrane reviews on the Thai Cochrane Network (TCN) website, including translating the higlights of each issue of The Cochrane Library, to develop more structure so that TCN activities are organised better and devolved to the nodes, and communication between them is improved, to learn how to provide better training and support and ensure its sustainability, and to help facilitate interaction between Thai authors and review groups [report].

This page was updated on 11 February 2014 after major changes to the scholarship were agreed and the scholarship moved from the UK to South Africa.


Updated on: December 1, 2015, 9:59

Comments for improvement or correction are welcome.