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Tobacco Use Research


Building Evidence to drive policy and Programmes

for Tobacco Control 


1st October, 2015


Call for proposals for tobacco control Research Grants for enrolled Masters Students

1.0    Background


The Centre for Tobacco Control in Africa (CTCA), hosted by the Makerere University School of Public Health (MakSPH), serves as the regional center of excellence to support African governments implement tobacco control policies and programs, with a vision of a sustainable, leading center in empowering and facilitating tobacco control policy and programme implementation to achieve tobacco-free Africa. 


The Center will be supporting one-year tobacco control research grants for Masters Students for the next three years with funding from Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC). The Project will be implemented through the 6 schools of public health in the Public Health Alliance1 including:

  1. Moi University in Kenya
  2. Jimma University in Ethiopia
  3. Muhimbili University in Tanzania
  4. National University of Rwanda in Rwanda
  5. Makerere University in Uganda
  6.  University of Nairobi in Kenya


The research grant is meant to support students enrolled for Masters on programs such as economics, agro-economics or environment and Taxation who have interest in pursuing research in tobacco control. The purpose of the research grant is to provide evidence for tobacco control policy and legislation for governments in Africa and the objectives include:


  1. To build capacity for research in tobacco control in Africa
  2. To Contribute to the tobacco control Research agenda in Africa
  3. To develop tools and document best practices for policy and legislation


2.0    Focus

 The grant will be premised on the WHO-FCTC demand and supply reduction measures of tobacco control with an interest on articles on:


·              Taxation

·              Trade

·              Environment management

·              Illicit Trade

·              TAPS

·              Pictorial Health Warnings

·              Product content and regulation



3.0    Eligibility

The following categories of students are eligible to apply:

1.           Students should be enrolled on any of the listed Master’s programs in the 6 Universities

2.           Student starting their second year are eligible for the grant 2015/2016

3.           Proposals that follow the research proposal requirements will be awarded

4.           Only proposals focusing on the articles listed in section two will be reviewed for award.


4.0    Selection Criteria

 The research proposals will be assessed according to the following key criteria:

1.           Relevance to WHO-FCTC demand and supply reduction measures for tobacco control with the potential for driving policy change and program improvement (See attached a detailed guide on example of policy issues)

2.           Scientific quality of the research project

  1. Evidence of capability to cover tuition fees for the Master’s Program.
  2. Project selection will take into account regional balance.

5.           Researchers and their supervisors must not have any association with the tobacco industry and that their project must not involve engagement with the tobacco industry. Relatedly grantees shall sign a form declaring their interests and absence of association with the tobacco industry.


5.0    Ethics Review and Approval

 Applicants, can submit research proposals that are not reviewed and approved by the Ethical Committees (IRBs and Councils of Science and Technology) however, all selected proposals shall be subjected to ethical review and MUST get ethics clearance before the projects begin.


6.0    Duration

The research grant will take one year, during which the students will collate and analyze data and write their dissertations and manuscripts. The grant will follow the stipulated academic calendar for Masters Programs in the respective Universities.


7.0    Grant Coverage and Focus 

The grants will be awarded over a period of 3 years starting 2013/2014 to 2015/2016. The first and second year grants were awarded and now this is the third and last year of award.

8.0 Student Supervision and Mentorship

Supervision and mentorship for the research grant will involve an academic supervisor from the student’s university and a Mentor who will be a Tobacco Control expert. Each selected Student will therefore have a Supervisor and a Mentor. CTCA will identify mentors who will be experts in the selected tobacco control areas for each of the grantees. The Mentor and academic supervisor will then be linked by CTCA to facilitate coordinated support for the student. CTCA will further enhance the coordination of the two through the virtual meetings and during the annual review meetings.


8.0    Expected Deliverables for the Grantees


·              Students are expected to conduct research and submit a dissertation

·              Prepare at least one policy brief and documentation for local dissemination of research findings

·              Present papers to local conferences and tobacco control policy events/activities where feasible

·              Draft Manuscript for publication


Call for Research Proposals

CTCA therefore, calls for research proposals on tobacco control from enrolledsecond year Masters Students in the following programs: Economics, Taxation, Trade, illicit Trade, Agricultural Economics and Environmental Economics 

Research Proposal Requirements

The proposals MUST include the following information:

Section A

             I.                  Brief bio of the applicant

          II.                  Name of the University and Faculty

       III.                  Statement of why the student is interested in the grant

Note: An application form has been attached

Section B

The Research proposals should have the following components:

  1. Problem statement
  2. Theoretical or conceptual framework for the research and its significance to specific tobacco control policy(ies)
  3. Research questions or hypothesis(es) to be tested
  4. Study objectives
  5. Methodology including:
    1. Study area and population
    2. Study Design
    3. Data collection methods/techniques
    4. Sampling Design
    5. Sample size
    6. Inclusion & exclusion criteria
    7. Study Variables


  1. Ethical considerations and if necessary, a plan for ethics approval.
  2. Policy implications

 VIII.                  Proposed Budget

       IX.                  Research Project Timeline

          X.                  Plan for dissemination of results including suggested target audience

The proposals should not exceed 7000 words (excluding Budget, Work plan, dissemination plan and attachments). The applicants will be selected by a team of expert reviewers comprising of MakSPH, CTCA and IDRC. The review team may co-opt additional member depending on expertise required. The proposals with higher likelihood of impacting on tobacco control policy will be given highest consideration.

Table 2: Proposal Evaluation Criteria



Significance: Significantly contribute to tobacco control body of knowledge, with high potential impact on TC policy and programs


Rigor: Clarity of objectives, rationale, and strength of research design and methodological approach


Investigator: Technical capacity of researcher to complete the proposed research


Budget: Adequacy of the budget to the planned research activities and within range of the grant


Submission and Notification Dates for the Research Proposals

 The call for this year 2015/2016 will open from 1st October 2015 and close on the 28th of February 2016. Research proposals shall be submitted to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Only Successful applicants will be notified and any applicant that will not be notified after one month of the stipulated deadline should consider his or her application unsuccessful.

Awards and funding

The research projects will involve: data review, data collection, data entry, cleaning, analysis and report writing. The scholarship grant shall in addition support costs of local travel, equipment (related to data collection such as recorders), stationery and dissemination of results. The total grant award for each student will not exceed $7000 and will be awarded discretionary. Research grants will be subject to the availability of funding.

Contact Person

Further inquiry should be send to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and; mugyenyip @ ctc-africa.org; nyamurungik @ ctc-africa.org. For any questions please refer to the FAQ on the http://www.ctc-africa.org

Annex 1: Application Form

Section A: Bio-data of Applicant


Information Required







Name of University




Master’s Programme enrolled on


Year of Study


Section B: Details of the Research Proposal



maximum number of words







Conceptual framework



Significance of area to TC policies/programs



Research questions









Ethical Considerations



Outline of potential findings and policy implications



Work Plan






Dissemination plan & target audience



Attachments-If any



Annex 2: Guide on Tobacco Control Policy Areas





It’s a treaty that was agreed upon by WHO Member states and contains proven cost effective measures to control tobacco use. The Measures are divided into two: Demand reduction and supply reduction

Articles 3, 4 & 5 provide the Objective, guiding principles and general obligations for member states.




Demand reduction measures of tobacco control

These are proven measures that effectively reduce tobacco use. These include:


·              Article 6: Price and tax measures to reduce the demand for tobacco

·              Article 7 Non-price measures to reduce the demand for tobacco

·              Article 8 Protection from exposure to tobacco smoke

·              Article 9 Regulation of the contents of tobacco products

·              Article 10 Regulation of tobacco product disclosures

·              Article 11 Packaging and labeling of tobacco products

·              Article 12 Education, communication, training and public awareness

·              Article 13 Tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship

·              Article 14 Demand reduction measures concerning tobacco dependence and cessation

WHO FCTC Articles: 6,7,8,9,10, 11, 12,13, &14



Supply reduction measures of tobacco control

These are proven measures that effectively reduce tobacco production


Article 15: Illicit trade in tobacco products


Article 16: Sales to and by minors


Article 17: Provision of support for economically viable alternative activities

WHO FCTC Articles: 15,16 & 17



Tobacco Control Programmes

These are programs at country level, which are usually housed at the Ministries of Health


Tobacco control Policy and legislation

These are aimed at domestication the WHO FCTC Treaty where governments which have signed and ratified the treaty are mandated to develop a tobacco control policy and law

The Conference of the Parties (COP) is the governing body of the WHO FCTC and is comprised of all Parties to the Convention. It keeps under regular review the implementation of the Convention and takes the decisions necessary to promote its effective implementation, and may also adopt protocols, annexes and amendments to the Convention. Observers may also participate in the work of the COP. The work of the COP is governed by its Rules of Procedure. Starting from COP3, the regular sessions of COP are held at two-year intervals