Prof. Nelson Sewankambo is is the director THRiVE consortium, President Uganda National Academy of Sciences and Principal Investigator Medical Education for Equitable Services Delivery for All Ugandans. He has received a number of recognition for his research, teaching, and public service, including a Grand Silver Medal, Karolinska Institute and the Uganda National Bioethics Award for outstanding contribution for development of research ethics in Uganda.
- Supervision and Mentorship
- Grant writing
- Research, teaching, and public service, honorary doctorates
- Benjamin Garver Lamme Medal of Engineering Education
- American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Our research team defined in Uganda the then mysterious “Slim Disease” and its association with HTLVIII and documented the beginning of an AIDS epidemic among a heterosexuals in the country (Lancet 1985). As the founding Ugandan Principal Investigator for over ten years I and colleagues established in 1997 the Rakai Project (later renamed Rakai Health Sciences Programme). The project is renowned for its world class HIV/AIDS research that has contributed to national and international HIV/AIDS prevention policies including male medical circumcision in prevention of HIV/AIDS.
I spearheaded the development of the Regional East African Community Health (REACH)-Policy Initiative to bolster research and programmatic work related to knowledge translation (KT) for policy and action. This has led to several initiatives in east Africa working to support KT.
I am coordinator of the International Chairs Initiative focusing on the evaluation of knowledge translations platforms. As part of this initiative, I am supervising 5 PhD students carrying out ground breaking research in knowledge translation.
In 2009, I initiated THRiVE 1, a research capacity building consortium involving seven African institutions (7 universities/ research institutes) and two universities in the UK.
Recognizing that Ugandan clinicians were resistant to undertaking PhD studies, I initiated an innovative Sida funded doctoral training programme (now 12 years) for joint PhD awards (Makerere-Karolinska) at Makerere Medical School (more than 30 beneficiaries).
Awards and honors In 2012, I received a Grand Silver Medal, Karolinska Institutet, the Uganda National Boethics Award for outstanding contribution for development of research ethics in Uganda. In 2008, I and my colleagues David Serwadda, Ron Gray and Maria Wawer received the N’Galy-Mann Award: a competitive international Lectureship award in recognition of the team’s immense contribution in epidemiology and clinical research of Rakai Health Sciences programme. In 2006 I received the Presidential Award for Scientific Excellence from the President of Uganda. I received two honorary doctorates one from McMaster University, Canada and another from Johns Hopkins University, School of Public Health, Baltimore.
Current memberships Fellow and President, Uganda national Academy of Sciences; External Associate member, Institute of Medicine, USA, Chair Steering Committee ISHReCA (Initiatives for Strengthening Health Research Capacity in Africa) – An Africa-wide Initiative; Board member Foundation for Advanced Research and Medical Education (FAIMER); a Fellow of The Academy of Sciences for the Developing World (TWAS)
I am a reviewer for the Lancet, and Social sciences and Medicine.