British Ecological Society-Ecologists in Africa Research Grant

Ecologists in Africa

This grant provides support for ecologists in Africa to carry out innovative ecological research. The BES recognises that ecologists in Africa face unique challenges in carrying out ecological research and this grant is designed to provide them with support to develop their skills, experience and knowledge base as well as making connections with ecologists in the developed world.

Application deadline

17 September 2013

We aim to notify applicants if they have been successful or not within two months of the deadline.


To support excellent ecological science in Africa by funding services and equipment.

Eligibility and Conditions

Applicants must:

                be a scientist and a citizen of a country in Africa or its associated islands

                have at least an MSc or equivalent degree

                be working for a university or research institution in Africa (including field centres, NGOs, museums etc.) that provides basic research facilities

                carry out the research in a country in Africa or its associated islands

The proposed work must be completed within 18 months

The grant can be used to pay for basic tools needed to conduct the research project, travel and in some cases part of the applicant’s salary. It cannot be used for tuition fees.

This grant cannot be used to support research degrees, however, researchers who have already been registered at a research institute or university for at least six months by the application deadline for the grant, can apply for funding for research that goes towards a degree. Applicants in these circumstances need to indicate that they have already gone some way in starting their research and that the money will not go towards course fees or personal salary.

Some funding may be provided to cover applicant’s expenses during research where it is shown that they will not be able to afford the time off from other paid employment. In these cases, applicants must state if the research work will be possible without BES funding to cover this lost income.The BES will not award more than one grant to any one applicant. Failure to submit a satisfactory report at the end of a grant will mean the grantee is ineligible to apply for further grants.


The maximum value of a grant is £8,000 for research. An additional sum up to £2,000 may be requested to fund travel to help grantees develop connections with other ecologists outside their usual peer group.

Travel funds are available for the applicant to spend time working with ecologists in developed countries where facilities and experience will help the grantee on return to their own institution.

Successful applicants also receive two years of free BES membership and free online access to the Society’s journals.

To Apply

Applications will only be assessed once the online referee statement of support has been received from the applicant’s institution, and if applying for travel funds, from the overseas host institution.

This referee statement should include why the project is important, what support will be given to the applicant and a statement that any equipment bought for the project will be made available for anyone in the host institution to conduct ecological research. We will automatically contact the referees using the email addresses provided in the application; both reference statements must be completed online before the application deadline. We cannot accept referee statements sent independently via email or by letter.

Applications for this grant must be made using the BES online application form. IMPORTANT: Only complete questions 3, 3a and 3b if you are requesting additional travel funds (see above).

The BES encourages applicants to discuss their applications with a respected colleague.

Assessment Criteria

The applications will be judged by a panel of reviewers on the basis of the applicant’s personal qualifications, the scientific excellence, novelty and feasibility of the proposal, and the academic and non-academic impact of the planned research.

Applicants need to demonstrate that they have made connections with ecologists in a developed country that can provide advice during the proposed project. If international travel is part of the application, applicants must demonstrate close links with those they propose to visit.

Funding is available for any area of ecological science excluding research focused solely on agriculture, forestry and bioprospecting. Please note that neither purely descriptive work nor studies that might be considered incremental will be funded.

The proposed project could be part of an existing programme but the application should be for a clearly defined piece of research. Researchers must also show how their research will have a wider impact beyond academia.

Repeat applications, year after year for essentially the same project will be rejected.

Find out more about how your application will be assessed by viewing the scoring criteria.

- See more at:

Mon, 2013-08-05 13:31 -- Anonymous (not verified)

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith