Home sha STAARS Fellowship for African Researchers at Cornell University in USA 2021

STAARS Fellowship for African Researchers at Cornell University in USA 2021

Cornell University is currently inviting Research Proposals for the STAARS Fellowship, Structural Transformation of African Agriculture and Rural Spaces project 2021.

Early-career African researchers selected as STAARS Fellows in 2021 will advance rigorous, policy-oriented research on the causal determinants of productivity and income growth, asset accumulation, rural employment and risk management in African agriculture and rural spaces.

The Fellowship covers travel and training expenses. STAARS fellows will be paired with mentors at Cornell University with whom they will jointly author a paper on a topic of mutual interest relating to structural transformation in Africa, south of the Sahara. The program aims for publication of resulting research findings in high-quality journals and as working papers. In addition, PIM and Cornell will facilitate Fellows’ participation in scientific and policy conferences.

Worth of Award


The selected applicants of the STAARS Fellowship will receive funds to cover travel and participation in a three-week mentorship program at Cornell University.


  • The call is open for early-career African researchers, either PhD students in their final year prior to degree completion or those who completed their PhD no earlier than 2016.
  • Priority is given to researchers who are African nationals based and working in – or soon returning to – Africa, with proposals relating to the research themes indicated above.
  • Qualified female researchers are particularly encouraged to apply. STAARS welcomes applications from fresh PhD graduates who can benefit from mentorship and additional training to become internationally respected and recognized researchers.
  • Fellows are expected to complete the proposed project by submitting findings as a complete working paper by December 15, 2021, and proceeding to submit the paper to a peer-reviewed journal and conferences in early 2022.
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Research Proposal Template

Applicants are expected to provide

  • Completed 2021 STAARS Fellowship Applicant Information Form.
  • Research Proposal (2500 words max.):
  • Title of the proposed research
  • Targeted country(-ies)
  • Introduction and motivation that includes a clear statement of research objectives and hypotheses.
  • Description of data source(s) and any prior experience working with the proposed data.
  • Proposed Methodology.
  • If applicable, a summary of any preliminary results.
  • A proposed timeline for the research.

In addition to the Research Proposal (not included in the 2500 words), applicants are also expected to provide:

  • Bibliographic references
  • CV of the applicant
  • If proposing to use data that are not publicly available, a letter or other documentation from the data steward(s) indicating that the applicant will have access to the data to use in the proposed project
  • Photocopy of the passport biodata page and, if applicable, any current US visa
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How to Apply

  • Applicants must prepare a maximum 2500-word research proposal. It must motivate the selected research issues and objectives, outline data sources and proposed methodology, and contain a convincing plan for completing the project by December 15, 2021. Projects that propose to use data that are not publicly available must provide documentation that they have access to those data.
  • Completed proposals should be submitted via email to [email protected]

Deadline: The deadline to submit a research proposal is January 31, 2021.

Click here for more details and to apply