Call for Applications: 2024 OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards
Prizes for early career women scientists in water, sanitation and hygiene
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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 has been extended to 15 October, 2023.
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 at least an informal translation into English and upload it along with the scanned original. 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 whose current scientific research is related to the area of water, sanitation and hygiene.
Given that from 2022-2026 the awards will respond to the call for action set forth by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), applicants must demonstrate how their research contributes to advancing knowledge in the area of water, sanitation and hygiene and to achieving the SDG6 (Clean water and sanitation).
The application can include, but is not limited to, references to the SDG6 target areas, e.g. universal and equitable access to safe and affordable drinking water; access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all; improvement of water quality by reducing pollution, eliminating dumping and minimizing release of hazardous chemicals and materials; increasing water-use efficiency and ensuring sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity; implementing integrated water resources management at all levels; and protecting and restoring water-related ecosystems.
The OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Awards are offered to women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). Applications from women in Social sciences, Humanities, Arts or other are NOT eligible.
Eligible STEM fields:
- Agricultural Sciences
- Astronomy, Space and Earth Sciences
- Biological Systems and Organisms
- Chemical Sciences
- Computing and Information Technology
- Engineering Sciences
- Mathematical Sciences
- Medical and Health Sciences (including Neurosciences)
- Structural, Cell and Molecular Biology
Any combination of these fields (i.e. interdisciplinarity) is acceptable.
In addition, the applicant must have lived and worked for at least 5 of the last 15 years* in one of the 66 scientifically and technologically lagging countries (STLCs) listed here:
Africa: 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, Zimbabwe.
Arab Region: Djibouti, Palestine (West Bank & Gaza Strip), Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Yemen.
Asia & Pacific: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Kiribati, Lao People's Dem. Rep., Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, Tuvalu, Vanuatu.
Latin America & Caribbean: 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 fulfil the above residence requirement.
Preference will be given to those candidates not currently (or within the last three years) in receipt of The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) or OWSD awards, fellowships or grants. Please note that OWSD Early Career Fellows and Alumnae are not eligible for these Awards.
If in doubt about your eligibility, please contact email@example.com.
- Cash prize of USD 5,000.
- All-expenses-paid trip to attend a relevant international conference.
The 5 awards will be distributed as follows: one for each of the four regions of the developing world (Africa, Arab region, Asia & the Pacific and Latin America & the Caribbean), plus an additional ¨floating” award for an outstanding candidate from any of these regions.
Applications for the 2023 awards are invited from women scientists who have made significant contributions in the area of water, sanitation and hygiene, whose research is linked to the SDG6 (Clean water and sanitation), and 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.
- Evidence on how your research contributes to advancing the SDG6 (Clean water and sanitation).
- 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
- 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 2024 awards is 8 October, 2023.
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 Sincrotrone, The International School for Advanced Sciences (SISSA) and the International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB). Since 2020, due to the COVID 19 pandemic and the impossibility of holding face-to-face meetings, we had the opportunity to draw 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 will be 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. Research that demonstrates the use of innovative techniques or methodologies (especially with regard to sustainable development), an awareness of the importance of sex and/or gender considerations in research methodology and content and/or interdisciplinary collaboration may be prioritised.
Successful candidates will be informed of their selection no later than 31 December 2023.
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