Call for Applications: AGNES Mobility Grant (Intra-Africa) for Junior Researchers - supported by BMBF and AvH

I. Background

We are pleased to announce that the Call for Applications for our new programme: the ‘AGNES Intra-Africa Mobility Grant for Junior Researchers’ is now open. The Grant is made possible through funding from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and with support of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (AvH).

The AGNES Mobility Grant for Junior Researchers aims to strengthen the scientific capacity and networking in Africa through active co-operation of AGNES and potential AGNES members. It further supports the alumni of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in their efforts towards coaching and mentoring high potential junior researchers, helping them to access international networks of scientific excellence.

II. Programme

The AGNES Intra-Africa Mobility Grant enables junior researchers (Masters and Doctoral students) from sub-Saharan African countries to spend research stays between 1 and 2 months at a university/research institute in another sub-Saharan African country (hereafter: host institution), where they will be collaborating with an experienced researcher (hereafter: scientific host). Eligible junior researchers need to demonstrate the relevance of their work for further development of their home countries in sub-Sahara Africa.

The Grant aims to be as financially comprehensive as is reasonably possible for a short stay outside the borders of the applicant’s country, covering travel and living costs, and includes a research allowance to the host institute to cover some of the research expenses. A maximum Grant amount of ZAR 34 500 (EUR 2 300) and ZAR 45 000 (EUR 3 000) is earmarked for 1 and 2 months stays, respectively.

III. Eligibility and Application Process

Direct applications from junior researchers only will be considered for the AGNES Mobility Grant.

The applicant may be from any academic discipline but must be officially registered for the Masters or the Doctoral degree at a university/tertiary institute in sub-Sahara Africa, and must be a national of a sub-Saharan African country. Applicants must demonstrate clearly that their work is relevant towards development in sub-Saharan African countries. Only applicants with an identified scientific host and mutually agreed-upon proposal/work schedule will be considered for the Grant.

Interested junior scientists should submit their electronic applications directly to the AGNES Desk via email: or to by 10 May 2016.

Complete applications shall include the following:

  • Letter of motivation from the junior scientist (applicant) with a short outline of the proposed research activity and a work schedule for achieving the aim(s) of the research project at the host institution. The scientific host must agree in writing to the proposal and time schedule.
  • CV of the applicant and proof of registration for the postgraduate degree (only current Masters and Doctoral students are eligible).
  • A list of publications (include an e-copy of at least the Title/Author page), or other proof of research outputs (e.g. Abstracts for conference posters, talks, presentations, etc.).
  • Travel costs (by land or economy class flight): supply two quotes for the journey (including return travel) between the applicant’s country of residence and the country of the host institute). In general, the cheapest option shall be chosen.
  • Estimated cost of living (rent, meals, local transport, health insurance) at the host institute. It is expected that applicants themselves will conclude a valid health insurance for the research stay. Scientific hosts and host institutes are expected to assist applicants in finding affordable accommodation and to advise them on establishing subsistence estimates.
  • Invitation letter from the scientific host: (i) confirming that a place to work will be available at the indicated period, (ii) a binding declaration from the host institution fixing the amount of the research cost allowance. A maximum amount of ZAR 1 500 (EUR 100) per month and ZAR 3 000 (EUR 200) per month, respectively, is earmarked for Humanities & Social Sciences, and Natural & Life Sciences and Engineering Sciences. If less than the maximum amount is stipulated, remaining funds out of the research cost allowance can be used for covering living cost of the Grantee.

AGNES Selection Committee Meeting: June/July 2016
Research stays: earliest in August 2016 and latest to be completed by 31 March 2017.

IV. Amount and Use of the Grant

This once-off Grant cannot be used to fund stays retrospectively, i.e. not prior to August 2016, and all stays must be completed by 31 March 2017. The Grant aims to cover travel and living costs, and includes a research allowance to the host institute.

The recipient of the Grant and her/his scientific host must each email a signed letter of acceptance to the Governing Board of AGNES within seven days of receipt of the offer.

On completion of the research stay, Grantees and scientific hosts are both expected to report to AGNES on the progress and success of the collaboration.

V. Budget maxima:

1 Month: Total: EUR 2 300 (approx. ZAR 34 500)
1.5 Months: Total: EUR 2 550 (approx. ZAR 38 250) ;
2 Months: Total: EUR 3 000 (approx. ZAR 45 000).

Applicants are urged to check the completeness of their application before submission, as incomplete nominations will not be deemed eligible for selection.