Aga Khan Foundation International Scholarship Programme for Developing Countries 2020

Aga Khan Foundation is currently inviting applications for the International Scholarship Programme in Switzerland for the 2021/2022 academic year.

The AKDN provides a limited number of scholarships each year for postgraduate studies to outstanding students from select developing countries. This is in order to develop effective scholars and leaders and to prepare them for employment, primarily within the AKDN.

Expectedly, these students are those who have no other means of financing their studies. Worthy of note is the fact that scholarships are awarded on a 50% grant: 50% loan basis through a competitive application process once a year in June or July.

Worth of Award

  • Kindly note that this scholarship assists students with tuition fees and living expenses only.
  • Funding for PhD programmes is only provided for the first two years of study, after which the students are expected to find alternative sources of assistance.
  • Financial assistance is provided according to the needs of students, but the ISP must be considered a lender of last resort.
  • Applicants are requested to make every effort to obtain funding from other sources as well so that the amount requested from the Foundation can be reduced to a minimum.
  • Preference is given to those who have been able to secure some funding from alternative sources.


Geographic Scope

As a matter of priority, the foundation accepts applications from nationals of the following countries:

  • Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Syria, Egypt, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Madagascar and Mozambique.
  • In France, Portugal, UK, USA and Canada, applications are accepted from those who are originally from one of the aforementioned developing countries, are interested in development-related studies and who have no other means of financing their education.

Residency Requirement

Applications are considered eligible and are accepted only when they are from

nationals listed above who are residing in one of the countries where there are

  • local Aga Khan Foundation (AKF),
  • Aga Khan Education Services (AKES), or
  • Aga Khan Education Board (AKEB) offices

which process applications and interview candidates.

Age Limit

Preference is given to students under 30 years of age.

Selection Criteria
The main criteria for selecting award winners are;

  • Consistently excellent academic records
  • Genuine financial need
  • Admission to a highly reputable university or programme of study
  • The relevance of the field of study to AKDN’s focus areas.
  • Candidates are also evaluated on demonstrating thoughtful and coherent educational and career plans, their extra-curricular interests and achievements, potential to achieve their goals and likelihood to succeed in a foreign academic environment.
  • Applicants are expected to have some years of work experience in their field of interest.

How to Apply

In the same vein,

  • Students may obtain application forms as of January 1st each year from AKF offices or Aga Khan Education Services/Boards in their countries of current residence.
  • Completed applications should be returned to the agency from which the form was obtained.
  • It is very important to note that the forms should not be sent to Geneva.

Deadline: The 2021-22 International Scholarship Programme application cycle is open from January 1, 2021, to March 31, 2021.

Click here for more details and to apply