2014 Volkswagen Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowships for African Researchers.

Application Deadline: September 5 2014

Knowledge for Tomorrow – Cooperative Research Projects in Sub-Saharan Africa

The  Volkswagen Foundation’s funding initiativeKnowledge for Tomorrow-Cooperative Research Projects in Sub-Saharan Africa” aims at providing sustainable support for research and research capacity development in Sub- Saharan Africa. This funding scheme represents a fundamental career development strategy for African researchers, as it provides promising postdoctoral researchers based in Africa with opportunities to enhance both their skills and academic qualifications; ultimately, it enables them to establish professional perspectives in academia.

This is to be achieved in cooperation between African and German scholars, as any postdoctoral project funded under this scheme needs to be carried out in collaboration with a German partner institute as well as further partners. Through this African- German cooperation, the initiative aims to support the development and extension of academic networks within, and beyond the African Continent

The funding initiative is open to all disciplines and aims at the development and sustainable reinforcement of research in Sub-Saharan Africa. Research projects, developed and carried out by African scholars and scientists in close cooperation with their German partners, shall provide junior researchers in Africa with an opportunity to enhance their skills and academic qualifications. Special emphasis is put on the development, reinforcement, and extension of academic networks inside Africa beyond existing language barriers.

Scope of Funding:

  • Funding can only be approved for research projects carried out in cooperation with a partner academic institution in Germany, and for Junior and Senior Fellowships with a 36-month duration.
  • It offers opportunities for postdoctoral researchers at both junior and senior (i.e. 3–6 years post-PhD) level to develop and conduct their own research projects.

Fellowship Worth:

  • The call provides funding opportunities for both junior and senior postdoctoral scholars. To be eligible for a junior postdoctoral fellowship, applicants must have less than three years of postdoctoral experience ( the PhD must be completed by June 2015, at the latest).
  • Postdoctoral researchers with more than three, but less than six years of postdoctoral experience are eligible to apply for a senior fellowship.
  • Both senior and junior researchers are then offered a fellowship of up to three years to conduct postdoctoral research while based on the African continent.
  • The fellowship covers salary, research, travel costs, and administrative costs of up to 90,000 EUR for junior fellows and of up to 120,000 EUR for senior fellows for three years.

Stage 1

Application and Selection Process

The application is organized as a three-stage process

Stage 2
Successful applicants of stage 1 will be invited to submit full proposals.

  • All full proposals will undergo an international review process. Details of the requirements for full proposals including the recommendations of the review committee will be forwarded to the successful applicants at the beginning of 2015.

The deadline for the submission of full proposals will be in March/April2015.

Stage 3

  • Applicants who have submitted full proposals will then have the opportunity to present their project at a selection conference presumably to be held in the late spring of 2015.
  • In the course of this conference, they will also be interviewed by the international review panel. Final decisions on fellowship grants will be made in the early summer of 2015

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Knowledge for Tomorrow-Cooperative Research Projects in Sub-Saharan Africa



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