Engineering for Development (E4D) Doctoral Scholarship Programme 2023 – Zurich, Switzerland (175’000 CHF in Funding)


Application Deadline: April 30th 2022

The Engineering for Development (E4D) doctoral scholarships promote research projects with a direct impact for underprivileged people living in countries on the OECD DAC-2022-23 list. Thus, the doctoral projects have to be innovative and develop a method or product, which is directly relevant for improving the livelihoods of underprivileged people living in low-income countries.

The goal of the Engineering for Development (E4D) Programme is to promote research and education for the benefit of underprivileged people in low-​income countries. The E4D Programme is generously funded through the Sawiris Foundation for Social Developmentcall_made and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.call_made The current programme phase runs from 2019 to 2023.

Eligibility Requirements

The candidate
• The general entrance requirements for doctoral studies at the ETH Zurich1 and the respective department must be fulfilled.
• Experience in the selected research area is required.
• Preference will be given to citizens of low- and lower-middle-income countries according to the OECD DAC-2022-23 list classification2 (soft factor).

The supervisor
• The doctoral supervisor must be an ETH professor and must have a guaranteed ETH position for the entire duration of the proposed project.
• It is expected that the ETH Zurich professor supports the candidate in elaborating the full proposal, if the concept note should be selected, and to supervise the candidate, if the full proposal is selected for funding.
• The supervisor confirms their commitment to the project by a letter of support, indicating their contribution to the project in cash or kind.

The research project
• The research topic is within the thematic scope of ETH Zurich.
• The proposal is a new doctoral project, not complementary funding to an on-going research.
• Subject of the proposed research is the development of methods, technologies, tools or products, which generate a direct impact for underprivileged people in low-income countries.
• The ecological, socio-economic and cultural context is taken into account


  • The E4D doctoral scholarship amounts CHF 175’000 for a period of three years. The scholarship/project period can be extended on a no-cost extension. Out of the scholarship grant, CHF 166’800 is reserved to cover the salary of the E4D Fellow for three years (level of employment: 100%, incl. social security), CHF 8’200 for material costs and/or travels.
  • Employment after the granted time period must be financed by other sources.
  • The doctoral salary must be on the level of the ETH standard doctoral salary. Adjustments of the salary scale might be made in adherence to the general ETH Domain remuneration policy as defined by the ETH Board. – Any extra costs associated with salary scale increases effected during the funding period must be borne by the host professorship.

Application Procedure:

Application Documents for an E4D Doctoral scholarship concept note comprise:

  • Project description (using this template (DOCX, 14 KB)vertical_align_bottom)
  • CV of the candidate 
  • Excellent MSc or MA degree from a recognised university and grade transcripts
  • Support letter of the supervising professor at ETH Zurich, clearly stating the financial contribution to the project
  • 2 reference letters from your field of research
  • Own publications or documentation of relevant activities relating to the project
  • Bibliography
  • Names and contacts of 5 independent external reviewers  

Please enter your information and upload all documents in the electronic form below. 

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Engineering for Development (E4D) Doctoral Scholarship Programme 2023


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