2021 OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early-Career Women Scientists in the Developing World (USD 5,000 Prize)

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Application Deadline: 30 September, 2020.

Launched in 2013, the OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early Career Women Scientists reward and encourage women working and living in developing countries who are in the early stages of their scientific careers, having often overcome great challenges to achieve research excellence. Awardees must have made a demonstrable impact on the research environment, both at a regional and international level, and must have received their PhD in the last ten years.

The awards programme grew out of a one-time award given in 2011 by OWSD, the Elsevier Foundation and TWAS, the World Academy of Sciences, which was given to 11 early career women from developing countries working in STEM subjects.  In 2013, the current awards programme was launched, with the number of awards reduced to 5 per year (one from each OWSD region plus one additional outstanding candidate) on a three-year rotation of award categories, in order to provide more focus and visibility. The eligible scientific disciplines for each year were organized into general fields:

  • Biological sciences: agriculture, biology and medicine – 2019 Awards (selected in 2018)
  • Engineering, innovation & technology – 2020 Awards (selected in 2019)
  • Physical sciences: chemistry, mathematics and physics – 2021 Awards (selected in 2020)

Eligibility

The applicant must be a woman who has received her PhD in a scientific discipline within the previous ten years and is currently undertaking scientific research in one of the eligible fields below.

The 2021 Awards for Physical Sciences are offered in the fields of Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics. Any combination of these fields (i.e. interdisciplinary) is acceptable. You can see a list of eligible disciplines here.

In addition, the applicant must have lived and worked in one of the following science and technology lagging countries for at least 5 of the last 15 years*:

Africa: Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Dem. Rep. Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Niger, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Arab Region: Djibouti, Palestine (West Bank & Gaza Strip), Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Yemen.

Asia and the Pacific: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Kiribati, Lao People’s Dem. Rep., Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, Tuvalu, Vanuatu.

Latin America and the Caribbean: Bolivia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay.

*Please note:

  • The 5 years of residence in the eligible country do not have to be consecutive.
  • Applicants can be citizens of any country, provided that they fulfil the above residence requirement.

Preference will be given to those candidates not currently (or within the last three years) in receipt of TWAS or OWSD awards, fellowships or grants. If in doubt about your situation, please contact [email protected].

Prize

  • Cash prize of USD 5,000.
  • All-expenses-paid trip to attend the Awards Ceremony that will be held in the framework of an international scientific event in 2021 (venue and date to be determined). The trip and the event will be confirmed in the coming months according to how the COVID-19 pandemic evolves. The awards ceremony may have to be online. Awardees will not be required to travel if they judge the situation to be unsafe.

The 5 awards will be distributed as follows: one for each of the four regions of the developing world, plus an additional ¨floating” award for an outstanding candidate from any of these regions.

The OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards have an important impact on local research cultures. Previous winners say the awards have had a powerful effect, enhancing the visibility of their past work and creating new opportunities for the future. The awardees are also powerful role models for young women in science.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the 2021 OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards

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