Deadline: March 1, 2021

Applications are open for the WARA/Mastercard Foundation Ideas Matter Doctoral Fellowships 2021 for West Africa. The West African Research Association (WARA), in collaboration with the Mastercard Foundation, is pleased to announce support for young West African scholars through its Ideas Matter Doctoral Fellowship program.

This program reflects their joint commitment to increasing opportunities for emerging West African scholars, people who are transforming ideas into active solutions to the challenges facing not only the region, but also throughout the globe.

West Africa, like other parts of the world, is rich in intellectual resources. Universities are home to scholarly communities of scientists, historians, artists, and social scientists. Young scholars in the region are carrying out innovative, cutting edge research in agriculture, technology, the humanities, and a wide range of other fields. They are poised to deliver innovative solutions to challenges posed by the changing climate, demographic shifts, and cultural transformations that mark these times. The Ideas Matter Doctoral Fellowship program will support the research initiatives of these young scholars.


  • The Ideas Matter Doctoral Fellowship program will award five doctoral research grants of $4,000 each.


  • Open to doctoral students;
  • Applicant should be under age 35;
  • Be based in West African institutions of higher education, for research on the continent.
  • Priority will be given to research projects focusing on women, technology and entrepreneurship.


The following are application requirements:

  • Project abstract (50-80 words)
  • 1500 word proposal
  • Budget
  • CV
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Statement explaining how your research will contribute to meeting critical needs on the continent

Click here to apply

For more information, visit WARA/Mastercard Foundation.

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