The SDSN Sahel is hosted by the Université Cheikh Anta Diop (UCAD) in Dakar, Senegal, with support from the Millennium Villages Alliance (formerly the MDG Centre West & Central Africa).
UCAD, founded in 1918, is the oldest university in francophone Africa and houses several important institutes, including IFAN (Institut Fondamental d’Afrique Noire) and the African Institute of Basic Research. The university has strong roots in sustainable development.
In 2006, the MDG centre West & Central Africa (WCA) was established in Bamako, Mali to support WCA countries to develop and implement operational strategies aimed at achieving the MDGs and to provide close and decentralized scientific and technical leadership, guidance and direction to support the development of strategies, methodologies, and technological- and policy-related interventions of the Millennium Villages Project (MVP), the Millennium Cities initiative (MCI) and MDG-based development processes at the regional, country and district levels. In 2016, the MDG Centre became the new Millennium Villages Alliance.