The Fellowship is offered to women scientists from Science and Technology Lagging Countries (STLCs) to undertake PhD research in the Natural, Engineering and Information Technology sciences at a host institute in the South.
The programme is administered with funds generously provided by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and is offered in partnership with host institutes throughout the developing world.
The general purpose of the fellowship programme is to contribute to the emergence of a new generation of women leaders in science and technology, and to promote their effective participation in the scientific and technological development of their countries.
The specific aims of the fellowship programme are:
- To improve access to educational and training opportunities in science and technology for young and talented women graduates from STLCs.
- To increase the scientific productivity and creativity of women scientists in STLCs.
- To empower a new generation of talented women to assume a leadership role in science and technology.
- To encourage women scientists to contribute to the sustainable development of their home countries.
- To enable women scientist from the South to collaborate and network on a regional and international level.
Candidates can choose between two study schemes:
- a full-time fellowship (maximum 4 years funding), where the research is undertaken entirely at a host institute in another developing country in the South.
- a sandwich fellowship, where the candidate must be a registered PhD student in her home country and undertakes part of her studies at a host institute in another developing country.
The sandwich fellowship is awarded for a minimum of 1 and a maximum of 3 research visits at the host institute. The minimum duration of the first visit is 6 months. The total number of months spent at the host institute cannot exceed 20 months. The funding period cannot exceed 4 years.
OWSD particularly encourages candidates to consider the sandwich option, which allows them to earn the PhD in their home country while accessing specialist researchers and equipment abroad, at the host institute.
The fellowship support is only provided while the student is on site, at the host institute.
The OWSD fellowship covers:
- A monthly allowance to cover basic living expenses such as accommodation and meals while in the host country
- A special allowance to attend international conferences during the period of the fellowship
- A return ticket from the home country to the host institute for the agreed research period
- Visa expenses
- Annual medical insurance contribution
- The opportunity to attend regional science communications workshops, on a competitive basis
- Study fees (including tuition and registration fees) in agreement with the chosen host institute which is also expected to contribute
The OWSD fellowship does not cover:
- Bench fees and consumables
- Support for language training, either before or during the fellowship programme
- Costs for personal computer or software purchase
- Support for family members
- Additional return tickets to the home country for personal reasons
1. Candidates must confirm that they intend to return to their home country as soon as possible after completion of the fellowship.
2. Eligible countries
Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Rep., Chad, Comoros, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Dem Rep. Congo, Djibouti, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia Equatorial Guinea, Gambia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, Kenya, Kiribati, Lao People’s Dem Rep., Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mongolia, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Palestine (West Bank and Gaza Strip), Paraguay, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tuvalu, Uganda, Vanuatu, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe
- Agricultural Sciences
- Astronomy, Space and Earth Sciences
- Biological Systems and Organisms
- Chemical Sciences
- Computing and Information Technology
- Engineering Sciences
- Mathematical Sciences
- Medical and Health Sciences
- Structural, Cell and Molecular Biology
4. Eligible academic qualification
The minimum qualification is an MSc degree in one of the above listed study fields.
5. Eligible host institutes
- Host institutes must be located in a developing country in the South (not the candidate's home country).
- A list of recommended institutes is available here.
- Other institutes, not included in the link above, will also be considered if they demonstrate appropriate resources and expertise.
- Candidates should identify a host institute outside their home country. They can identify a further two host institutes if desired.
- Candidates who are already on site in the host country will not usually be considered eligible.
- The fellowships are highly competitive and selection is based on scientific competence and merit. The candidate’s project proposal is given particular attention.
- The applications will be reviewed by a panel of eminent scientists, appointed and chaired by OWSD.
- The Selection Committee’s decision is final and without appeal. It cannot be contested or subject to explanation or justification.
- Only selected applicants will be notified.
- If selected for an OWSD fellowship, kindly note that OWSD must be informed by the awardee of additional/supplementary grants, funds and bursaries that have been awarded in connection with her PhD research programme, specifying the donor, amount, duration and purpose of the grant (which costs are meant to be covered). Any breach of this rule could lead OWSD to cancel the fellowship. If the awardee is recipient of a significant grant, OWSD may decide to reduce the fellowship support accordingly.