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African Fashion Research Fund

The CIAFE African Fashion Research Fund (AFRF) is beginning this initiative with a micro research grant designed to support early-career researchers in promoting research into African fashion, textiles, and related industries. At present, the grant targets early-career researchers interested in exploring the rich cultural heritage and economic potential of the African fashion ecosystem.


The focus of the research may be on a specific aspect of African/African Diaspora fashion, such as traditional textiles and weaving techniques, contemporary fashion trends and styles, sustainability, beauty and hair or the social and economic impact of the fashion industry on African communities and international markets. 


Through our research and through many conversations, we have recognised the need for financial support when it comes to research. We are aware of the lack of documentation of African and Diaspora Fashion and hope that more scholars will be provided with an opportunity to develop insightful research. 


We are beginning with micro seed grants from $100 - $250 for Early-Career researchers who are a part of our African and Diaspora Fashion Research Network to assist them with costs related to their research.


Examples of eligible costs include 

  • Registration fees for a conference to help with your research

  • Cost of Microsoft365 subscription

  • Cost to purchase books to help with your research

  • Cost to access journal article papers to help with your research

  • Costs of a Zoom/Skype/Microsoft Teams subscription to conduct research

  • There are other ways to use this funding - we welcome ideas



This micro-grant is specifically for early-career researchers. 



The micro research grant is a valuable opportunity for researchers and practitioners to explore African fashion's complex and dynamic landscape and contribute to the ongoing conversation about the social, cultural, and economic significance of this vibrant and rapidly evolving industry. By supporting research and innovation in this area, the CIAFE micro research grant seeks to help promote greater understanding, appreciation, and recognition of African fashion's diverse and rich cultural heritage.



  • The grant applicant must be a member of the CIAFE African and Diaspora Fashion Research Network

  • The grant must be for a clear and targeted focus - this cannot be used as a supplement for course fees or a larger funding bid or for personal use

  • The applicant must provide evidence during the proposal to show why they require the microgrant

  • The grant recipient must provide a receipt related to the grant once the grant has been awarded

  • The research must be related to African and Diaspora Fashion Studies that must be published and accessible



Applications will be judged based on the following criteria:

  • The relevancy of the research project

  • How clear and focused the project is 

  • Accessibility of information 

  • Quality of project

  • Need of funding

  • What value the project will add to the African Fashion Industry



  1. You are to fill out an application form

  2. Send a CV (no longer than 2 pages in a PDF format only).  Please note that only CVs that are sent in a PDF format will be accepted, do not send a word document 

  3. A 60-second video summarising who you are, why you need to grant, and how you intend to use it. This video should be uploaded to YouTube or Vimeo (you can keep it unlisted for privacy). Please do not send the video as an attachment, as it can be difficult to download and view

  4. Any supporting documents relevant to your research


Please send your CV, Cover Letter and link for your video to with the subject headline 'AFRICAN FASHION RESEARCH FUND VIDEO' and should you wish to request more information or have further enquiries, these can be sent to the same email address.

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