IRO Doctoral Scholarship Programme for Developing Countries in Belgium, 2017-2018

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Catholic University of Leuven (KU Leuven) annually invites applications for IRO doctoral scholarship programme available for students from Developing Countries. The applicant must be a citizen of one of the countries on the OCDE DAC table that are considered as: Least Developed Countries, Low Income Countries or Low Middle Income Countries.

As one of its contributions to development cooperation, KU Leuven offers scholarships every academic year to exceptional students from developing countries to course their PhD in the largest university of Flanders, Belgium. The programme is organised and managed by IRO, the University’s

The programme is organised and managed by IRO, the University’s Interfaculty Council for Development Cooperation. This programme is intended for the student to do his or her whole research at KU Leuven; therefore, any other type of agreement (e.g. Sandwich programmes, etc) are not envisioned.

The candidate must hold an academic qualification at least equivalent to a high distinction. Degrees obtained with a final score equivalent to second class second/lower division will not be taken into consideration.

Course Level: Scholarships are available for pursuing Ph.D program at KU Leuven.

Study Subject(s): Applicants for the IRO Doctoral Scholarship Programme may choose a research topic proposed by one of the KU Leuven Doctoral Schools: Humanities and Social Sciences, Science, Engineering and Technology Biomedical Sciences or applicants may propose their own research topic.

Scholarship Award:

Doctoral Students Pre-doctoral Students
Monthly basic amount € 1,415 (75% of the net salary of an assistant)
paid at the end of each month
€1000 paid at the beginning of each month
with accompanying partner (and children) living in the same address with a valid Belgian residence permit.** Partners who receive any other income are not elegible. Housing allowance of
€ 200/month
Housing allowance of
€ 200/month
Child allowance and accident insurance as an employee for work-related accidents* Covered by the Belgian social security* Not covered
Installation Allowance (only for students who are not living in Belgium; upon arrival) €550 €550
Tuition fee Waived Waived
Affiliation with a Belgian Health Insurance company Reimbursed by KU Leuven Reimbursed by KU Leuven
Third-party liability insurance (private life) Reimbursed by KU Leuven Reimbursed by KU Leuven
Professional and accident insurance coverage; third party liability insurance (study related matters and for professional liability) Paid by KU Leuven Paid by KU Leuven
Return flight tickets for the IRO student and his/her partner (and children)** living in Belgium with a valid residence permit. One way ticket to return to your home country at the end of your research. Paid by KU Leuven Paid by KU Leuven
  • The doctoral scholarship is subject to partial or full social security depending on the country of origin. Please refer to page 36 of the brochure Travelling to Leuven.
  • Does not apply for people with a long term EEA residence permit or nationality.
  • The IRO Doctoral Scholarship does not include financing for mobility within the framework of the PhD. Nonetheless, the Interfaculty Council for Development Co-operation offers mobility grants for PhD candidates and their (co)promoters; these grants are organized on a competitive basis.

Scholarship can be taken in Belgium

Eligibility:

  • The applicant must be a citizen of one of the countries on the OCDE DAC table that are considered as Least Developed Countries, Low-Income Countries or Low-Middle-Income Countries.
  • The applicant may not possess a citizenship from an EU country. The applicant may not possess a long-term EU residence permit.
  • The candidate’s latest master’s degree must have been awarded no more than ten years prior to October 1st, 2017 (including the ongoing calendar year).
  • The candidate must hold an academic qualification at least equivalent to a high distinction. Degrees obtained with a final score equivalent to second class second/lower division will not be taken into consideration.
  • The research project must have excellent academic quality, with a special focus on the development relevance of the proposal.
  • The vacancies that are published on the KU Leuven website are already funded and thus, cannot participate for this scholarship.
  • The candidate must demonstrate a development-oriented motivation.
  • The candidate must be supported by a KU Leuven promoter.
  • The candidate must be supported by a local co-promoter at the candidate’s home country or where most of the research will be carried out and which must be one of the countries on the OCDE DAC table that are considered as: Least Developed Countries, Low-Income Countries or Low Middle Income Countries.
  • The candidate must be supported by excellent recommendations from relevant referees.
  • The candidate must follow the application procedure and complete his file before November 13th 2016. Please make sure to fill up the application form with the following instructions:
    1. First name and last name exactly as written on the passport.
    2. Status: Doctoral Programme (diploma contract) or Predoctoral programme.
    3. Academic year: If you apply between September and October 2016, you must select 2016-2017; we will change this manually once the call for applications for 2017-2018 opens. Starting from November 2016, you must select 2017-2018.
    4. Is this application also intended as a scholarship application? Yes.
    5. Name of the scholarship agency: IRO Doctoral Scholarship

Nationality: Students from one of the countries on the OECD DAC table that are listed under the following categories: Least Developed Countries, Low Income Countries or Low Middle Income Countries can apply for this IRO Doctoral Scholarship Programme.

List of Countries: Afghanistan, Kenya, Armenia, Angola, Korea, Dem. Rep., Belize, Bangladesh, Kyrgyz Rep., Bolivia, Benin, Tajikistan, Cameroon, Bhutan, Zimbabwe, Cape Verde, Burkina Faso, Congo, Rep., Burundi, Côte d’Ivoire, Cambodia, Egypt, Central African Rep., El Salvador, Chad, Fiji, Comoros, Georgia, Congo, Dem. Rep., Ghana, Djibouti, Guatemala, Equatorial Guinea, Guyana, Eritrea, Honduras, Ethiopia, India, Cuba, Gambia, Indonesia, Guinea, Iraq, Guinea-Bissau, Kosovo1, Haiti, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Micronesia, Federated States, Laos, Moldova, Lesotho, Mongolia, Liberia, Morocco, Madagascar, Nicaragua, Malawi, Nigeria, Mali, Pakistan, Mauritania, Papua New Guinea, Mozambique, Paraguay, Myanmar, Philippines, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Niger, Swaziland, Rwanda, Syria, Samoa, Tokelau, São Tomé and Príncipe, Tonga, Senegal, Turkmenistan, Sierra Leone, Ukraine, Solomon Islands, Uzbekistan, Somalia, Vietnam, South Sudan, West Bank and Gaza Strip, Sudan, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tuvalu, Uganda, Vanuatu, Yemen and Zambia K.U.-Leuven-Scholarships

College Admission Requirement

Entrance Requirement: The candidate must hold an academic qualification at least equivalent to a high distinction. Degrees obtained with a final score equivalent to second class second/lower division will not be taken into consideration.

Test Requirement: No

English Language Requirements: 

  • Applicants need to provide an official proof of English proficiency, the only accepted certificates are:
    • IELTS: Academic
    • TOEFL: iBT, computer-based or paper-based
    • TOEFL ITP is not accepted
    • Cambridge: CAE or CPE
    • FCE is not accepted
  • Applicants can find more information about the English proficiency certificates here.

Belgium Scholarships

How to Apply: Applications may be submitted via online or post.

Application Form

Application Deadline: The deadline for applications is November 13th2016.

Scholarship Link

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