Makerere University – MAK (Uganda) & Kyambogo University (Uganda), in collaboration with Wageningen University (The Netherlands), Tree Adoption Uganda (TAU) and The Africa 2000 Network (A2N) invites applications for 2 PhD scholarships under a four-year Project titled ‘Restoring Resilience & Stimulating Stewardship of the Manafwa Watershed (2019 – 2022).

Watersheds worldwide provide crucial ecosystem services, such as the regulation of water and climate, and the provision of food and raw materials. However, watersheds are increasingly under threat of degradation and over-exploitation of their natural resources. This project focuses on the Manafwa watershed in Eastern Uganda, which forms part of the Mount Elgon National Park, and is impacted by increasingly frequent floods, landslides, shrinking forest reserves, soil degradation, and droughts.

The 2 PhD positions

The PhD study at Makerere University will focus on finding and analysing the drivers of
restoration, reforestation, conservation and increasing biodiversity within the park boundaries and adjacent areas, through in-depth analysis of the human-nature interaction, the friction between the National Park and the needs of the people, and how a mind-set change can contribute to the restoration and conservation of the park, prevention of landslides and flash floods, and positive spill-over effects in the neighbouring areas.

The PhD study at Kyambogo University will use participatory research to assess the ecological impact in the already cultivated areas outside the park boundaries, linked to the mind-set change created by the PIP. Focus will be on quantifying the gains made by the PIP approach, socio-economic impact created by the PIP approach, and how the approach can be scaled-up horizontally and vertically in the project area, by including different stakeholders in the process.

Awards are competitive, and strong proposals are a key to funding. Female candidates are
encouraged to apply. Further information about the described topics can be obtained from either Prof Frank Muggaga (topic 1 – [email protected] / [email protected]) or from Dr. Fiona Mutekanga (topic 2 – [email protected] / [email protected]).

Worth of Award

The Scholarship covers;

  • A PhD scholarship for a period of four years,
  • covering tuition fees at the respective Universities,
  • research and travel expenses.
  • The monthly stipend is Euro 1290 during the months working in Wageningen, and an equivalent of Euro 500 for the months working in Uganda.
  • Accommodation at the research site in the Manafwa watershed is available.


To be eligible for this scholarship,

  • The applicant should have completed; A Masters degree in Natural Sciences (Biology/Botany, Wildlife Ecology); Social Sciences (Geography, Political science, Economics, Sociology, Anthropology, Development Studies); Environmental Sciences or any other closely related subject.
  • Applicants should have an excellent academic and educational record (Minimum: Upper Second for undergraduate and an average of B for the Masters)
  • and strong analytical and writing skills (any peer-reviewed publications or previous research experience will be an advantage).
  • Successful applicants will be expected to contribute to the project’s publication targets and will be encouraged to publish in international, peer-reviewed ISI journals.
  • The candidates should be able to work independently but also as part of the project team.
  • Age limits: Not more than 40 years (female applicants) and 35 (male applicants) at the time of application.

How to Apply

  • Interested applicants should submit applications by e-mail to either Prof Frank
    Mugagga (topic 1) or Dr. Fiona Mutekanga (topic 2), including:
  • A brief statement of interest or cover letter describing your motivation to apply (max 1 page);
  • A description of your research ideas for the specific topic of no more than 2 pages, outlining the thematic focus, possible research questions, and the methodological and theoretical focus;
  • A curriculum vitae (CV) of max 4 pages;
  • Publications if any; and as it is often difficult to judge the applicant’s contribution to publications with multiple authors, a short description of the applicant’s contribution must be included.
  • Contact information (with phone numbers and e-mail addresses) for two persons who may act as references.


Deadline: Application closes on May 15, 2019.

Click here for more details and to apply

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