Claim Your Space: Leadership Development as a Research Capacity Building Goal in Global Health

Collins O. Airhihenbuwa, Gbenga Ogedegbe, Juliet Iwelunmor, Girardin Jean-Louis, Natasha Williams, Freddy Zizi, Kolawole Okuyemi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


As the burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) rises in settings with an equally high burden of infectious diseases in the Global South, a new sense of urgency has developed around research capacity building to promote more effective and sustainable public health and health care systems. In 2010, NCDs accounted for more than 2.06 million deaths in sub-Saharan Africa. Available evidence suggests that the number of people in sub-Saharan Africa with hypertension, a major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, will increase by 68% from 75 million in 2008 to 126 million in 2025. Furthermore, about 27.5 million people currently live with diabetes in Africa, and it is estimated that 49.7 million people living with diabetes will reside in Africa by 2030. It is therefore necessary to centralize leadership as a key aspect of research capacity building and strengthening in the Global South in ways that enables researchers to claim their spaces in their own locations. We believe that building capacity for transformative leadership in research will lead to the development of effective and appropriate responses to the multiple burdens of NCDs that coexist with infectious diseases in Africa and the rest of the Global South.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17S-24S
JournalHealth Education and Behavior
StatePublished - 2015

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Drs Ogedegbe and Jean-Louis were supported in part by the following grants from the National Institutes of Health (R25HL105444) and the NIH Fogarty International Center D43TW009140. Dr Ogedegbe was also supported by grants K24HL111315 and U01HL114198.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Society for Public Health Education.


  • Africa
  • Global South
  • NCDs
  • capacity building
  • leadership


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