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16 TRAJECTS PhD Scholarships 2021 - University of Cape Town

DEADLINE: 30 November 2021

The Transnational Centre for Just Transitions in Energy, Climate and Sustainability- TRAJECTS opens its Call for Applications for Master and PhD Scholarships 2021.

TRAJECTS is a DAAD-funded project that seeks to create and strengthen research and teaching capacities on Just Transitions in Energy, Climate and Sustainability, especially in the Global South.

Within this framework, Master scholarships aim to strengthen the research capacity of our partners in the Global South and to increase the number of students contributing to research questions relevant for TRAJECTS as well as their individual interests and future careers.

Similarly, PhD scholarships aim to strengthen the research capacity of our partners in the Global South, and generate long-term local capacity to deal with academic and practical questions related to Transitions to Sustainability.


PhD scholarships: Timeline for the 1st cohort (2022-25)

November 2021: Deadline for applications: November 30.

January 2022: Digital interviews of shortlisted candidates with members of the scholarship committee and notification of selected candidates

February 2022: Earliest possible start of TRAJECTS PhD scholarships 1st cohort


In their studies, beneficiaries will contribute to answering one (or more) research questions from the TRAJECTS research “pool”, and will benefit from inter-and transdisciplinary exchange with other consortium partners, and researchers. Scholarship recipients will also have the opportunity to be actively engaged in the co-development of study opportunities, as well as on nurturing the growing transcontinental TRAJECTS-network.

The topic of and research activities during the PhD must be relevant to TRAJECTS’ main objectives and research topics, climate change mitigation in the following two key sustainability transition issues:

  • Fossil fuel phase-out and,

  • Changes in land management and ecosystem protection

Download here a more detailed presentation of TRAJECTS objectives and research topics:

Type of funding

  1. Monthly allowance: Monthly stipend of 500 Euro for maximum 3 years (36 months), starting earliest on January 1st 2022, ending latest on December 31st 2024.

  2. Travel costs: For PhD candidates coming from third countries funds are available to support international travel between the home and the host country, costs for visa and/or health insurance. Travel costs will be paid based on real costs up to a budget limit per eligible grantee to be calculated depending on the number of eligible grantees.

  3. Family support: Limited funds are available for PhD candidates coming from third countries to support accompanying children. Only children for whom the grantee does not receive national child benefits are eligible for this funding. Max. allowance: 204,-EUR/child/month – amount subject to availability of funds.

  4. Individual Material Expenditure Allowance for Research: Real costs up to the budget limit of 2.000,- EUR per PhD grantee (for the whole funding period of 36 months).

Eligibility criteria

  • English language proficiency

  • Last degree certificate should not be older than six years when applying for the scholarship

  • Acceptance/Enrolment as PhD student at UCT/ UNAL

  • Newly enrolled or 1st year PhD student at the beginning of the funding period – funding granted initially for max 6 semesters and max. until the end of the 6th semester (subject to a yearly check of academic achievement).

  • Exceptional cases of funding of students in the 2nd or higher year of PhD studies at the beginning of the funding period can be considered (start max. three years ago and subject to the decision of scholarship committee).

  • Exceptional cases of funding beyond the end of the 6th semester can be considered (Subject to the decision of scholarship committee).

Application procedure

  • Applications should be submitted according to the instructions of the host institution, e.g. via email together with all other documents (e.g. CV, motivation letter, certificates, references etc.)

  • In addition, applicants must register via a Google form (access application form).

  • Applicants receive a confirmation of receipt by e-mail.

Selection procedure

After the final deadline of the call for applications, eligible candidates will be evaluated and ranked by the respective host institution. Special attention will be given to attain the diversity goals of TRAJECTS. At least 30% of short-listed candidates must contribute to increasing the diversity of TRAJECTS scholars (scholars who have scored points for the criterion “member of and underrepresented /disadvantaged group” and/or “financial need”).

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to participate in a digital interview with the scholarship committee. Other eligible, but not short-listed candidates will be transferred to a reserve list. After the interviews, the scholarship committee will select 8 candidates for a TRAJECTS PhD scholarship.

All applicants will be informed by email: Candidates will be nominated; ineligible applicants will be rejected and applicants on the reserve list will be informed about their status. If a candidate does not accept a scholarship, the next person on the reserve list is nominated.

Individual calls Host Universities

  • University of Cape Town (UCT). Deadline for applications: November 30.

  • Universidad Nacional de Colombia (UNAL). Deadline for applications: November 30.

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