The African Researchers’ Initiative ARI
Deafblindness is, unarguably, the most complex disability and the least researched area of disability especially in Africa. Despite the many progresses in addressing the issue of disability in Africa, people with deafblindness remain little known about and expectedly the most marginalized group of persons with disabilities in Africa. One of the major factors for the marginalization is lack of research. Very few researchers are working on deafblindness in the African context. Awareness campaigns, inclusion efforts and approaches used in the rehabilitation and education of persons with deafblindness in Africa are mostly based on research and international service organizations from developed countries. Aware of these facts and determined to alter the status quo, Deafblind International (DbI) is launching an initiative called African Researchers’ Initiative (ARI).
What is the overall objective of ARI?
The overall objective of ARI is to lay a strong foundation for knowledge-based services for people who are deafblind in Africa by stimulating and supporting African research on deafblindness.
What is the specific objective of ARI?
The specific objective of ARI is building a network of African researchers and support ten outstanding research projects to be finished by summer 2021 and ready to be presented at the very 1st African DbI Conference on Deafblindness in fall 2021 in Kenya. DbI has a broad understanding of research including action research of practitioners in the field.
How does ARI intend to achieve this objective?
ARI has a coordinator and a research advisory committee (AC ARI) in place which is overseen by the strategic Vice President of DbI. Members of the AC ARI are:
Prof. Dr. Marleen Janssen, University of Groningen, The Netherlands
Dr. Meredith Prain, Senses Australia, Australia
Dr. Daniel Dogbe, University of Education, Winneba, Ghana
Victor Locoro, Kyambogo University, Uganda
Pawlos Kassu Abebe, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia
The AC ARI will soon release a call for abstracts to interested researchers and practitioners. Ten abstracts will be selected from the entries and those selected will be provided with a research grant of 500 Euros each.
The researchers who submit their research in due time will be further sponsored with an additional 700 Euros to present their research at the 1st African DbI Conference on Deafblindness scheduled to be held in Nairobi, Kenya in fall 2021.
The researchers also will be helped to become members of DbI’s Research Network or any other DbI Network that might be interesting to them. Through their membership in one of DbI’s Networks they will have the opportunity to get to know, exchange and collaborate with practitioners and renowned researchers in the field and to get information on conferences relevant to deafblindness around the world including the next DbI World Conference scheduled to be held in Canada in 2023.
What to do?
Watch out for the call for abstracts. If you wish to receive the call for abstracts through your personal email, send your email address to the ARI coordinator at The call for abstracts and deadline for submissions will be sent out shortly. You also may wish to send this flyer to other researchers and practitioners.
For further information please contact the ARI coordinator at

6 Reviews

  1. Please keep me updated. – I am working at the Norwegian National Resource Center «Eikholt» as a coordinator of Research here.

    1. Please be in touch with the organizers. Contact included in the publication. Thanks

  2. This idea is God sent,a comprehensive research is quite in order especially in Africa.Thanks for the Think tanks who came up with the idea.

  3. Hi my name is Joyce Ng’ara. I am a teacher at Kwale school for the deaf ,a teacher in charge for Kwale unit for the deafblind,visually impaired and multiple disabilities. O would like to be among the researchers fro Africa who will present my school,Region and County come 2021.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *