OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards
for Early Career Women Scientists in the Developing World 2021 – Physical Sciences: chemistry, mathematics and physics
The call for applications for the OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early Career Women Scientists in the Developing World is now open. Deadline for submitting applications is 30 September, 2020.
All applications must be submitted online. In order to help you prepare, you can see our application guidelines here for your reference. The official language for the application is English. If you are submitting any supporting documents (such as residency certificate, degree certificate, etc.) in a language which is not English, you must attach an (informal) translation into English. Documents in other languages with no accompanying English translation will not be considered.
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 region: 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,
Arab region: Djibouti, Palestine (West Bank & Gaza Strip), Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Yemen.
Asia and the Pacific region: 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 region: Bolivia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay.
– 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 fulfill the above residence requirement.
Please note: 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
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.
Applications for the 2021 awards are invited from women scientists working in the Physical Sciences (chemistry, mathematics and physics), who have lived and worked for at least 5 years in an eligible STLC.
Applications must be made online, in English, and must include:
– Official documentation proving 5 years’ residency in an eligible STLC .
The following documents can be submitted as proof of residence as long as the name of the applicant (as written in the online form) appears clearly: statement from the local police office or municipality, population registry office, rental agreement, utilities bills, employment contract. This list is not
exhaustive and alternative documents can be considered. Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org if you are not sure about the eligibility of your documents.
– Short biography of approximately 350 words describing your journey to become an outstanding scientist (for ease, we recommend that you prepare this beforehand and copy-paste into the text box)
– PhD certificate
– Curriculum vitae
– Full list of publications (if not included in the CV)
– At least 2 reference letters (reference letters must be prepared on official letterhead and should be written and signed by senior scientists familiar with your research).
The deadline for submission of applications for the 2021 awards is 30 September 2020.
Application guidelines and a sample application form can be found here.
The competition will be judged by a distinguished panel of specialists in the appropriate fields and who are aware of the challenges facing women scientists in developing countries.
Traditionally, the selection committee has met in person at the OWSD Secretariat based in Trieste, Italy and we have been able to draw on a broad range of expertise from this ‘City of Science’, including the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), the University of Trieste, Elettra Sincratrone, The International School for Advanced Sciences (SISSA) and the International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB). Now that we face special conditions this year (owing to the COVID 19 pandemic) in person meetings are limited and we are drawing on a broader pool of experts based also in the developing world. The Selection Panel is chaired by the OWSD Coordinator with full administrative support from the OWSD Secretariat.
Assessment is based on the applicant’s achievements in her scientific field, with additional attention paid to evidence of leadership skills, initiative and innovation, as well as to the candidate’s involvement in capacity building, outreach and civic contribution.
Successful candidates will be informed of their selection by 31 December 2020.
Phone: +39 040 2240530