Fully funded Fellowship for Students in Europe, Middle East and Africa in the Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship 2021

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Apply for the Microsoft Research PhD Scholarship as a student in Europe, Middle East and Africa to get a fully funded scholarship and a research grant of $15,000 USD to complete your doctor’s thesis.

Application Deadline: June 30 2021

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Benefits

  • $15,000 USD is provided to help complete research as part of their doctoral thesis work for academic year 2022–23.
  • Eligible recipients will be offered a 12-week paid internship with Microsoft Research’s Cambridge, UK lab, or the Microsoft Africa Research Institute (MARI).
  • Opportunities will be provided to build relationships with research teams at Microsoft and receive mentorship

Eligibility

Microsoft’s mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. Students should support this mission and embrace opportunities to foster diverse and inclusive cultures within their communities.

  • PhD students must be enrolled at a university in EMEA (Europe, the Middle East, or Africa).
  • Proposed research must be closely related to one of the themes at Microsoft Research Cambridge:

Cloud Infrastructure

Confidential Computing

Future of Work

Health Intelligence

Machine Intelligence

  • Students must be entering their third year or beyond of their PhD program sometime between August 2021 – July 2022 having taken into account transfers, approved leaves of absence, etc.
  • PhD students must continue to be enrolled at the university in the beginning of academic year 2022 or forfeit the award. Fellowships are not available for extension. If you require time away for family or medical leave, this will be accommodated. If you are unsure if a particular need for time away will affect the award, you can contact Microsoft Research Fellowships at msfellow@microsoft.com.
  • Payment of the award, as described above, will be made directly to the university and dispersed according to the university’s policies. Microsoft will have discretion as to how any remaining funds will be used if the student is no longer qualified to receive funding (e.g., if the student unenrolls from the program, graduates, or transfers to a different university).
  • Funding is for use only during the recipient’s time in the PhD program; it cannot be used for support in a role past graduation, such as a postdoc or faculty position. Those interested in receiving this fellowship will need to confirm their PhD program starting month and year, as well as their expected graduation month and year.
  • A recipient of the Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship subject to disciplinary proceedings for inappropriate behavior, including but not limited to discrimination, harassment (including sexual harassment), or plagiarism will forfeit their funding.
  • PhD students submitting a proposal should be able to communicate about their research (both in writing and verbally) in English.

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Application Instructions

Proposals and letters of recommendation for the Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship will be accepted through Wednesday, June 30, 2021 at 7:00 PM UTC. The below outlines the information necessary to submit your proposal in our submission portal.

You will be asked to answer the below questions in a form:

  • Your name, email, country, university, and department
  • Primary area of research (from those listed below)

Cloud Infrastructure

Confidential Computing

Future of Work

Health Intelligence

Machine Intelligence

Thesis proposal or research statement title

  • Month and year entered the PhD program and expected graduation date (you must be entering your third year or beyond sometime between August 2021 – July 2022)
  • URL to your professional website (optional, but strongly recommended; you are encouraged to make certain it is up-to-date)
  • One to three academic conferences you are most likely to attend
  • Self-assessment of the Statement of Good Standing: “I declare I have never been disciplined for inappropriate behavior, including, but not limited to discrimination, harassment (including sexual harassment), or plagiarism. If I am selected to receive funding under Microsoft’s Fellowship program, during my funding time period, I agree to inform Microsoft should I be subjected to disciplinary proceedings for inappropriate behavior, including but not limited to discrimination, harassment (including sexual harassment), or plagiarism which would result in forfeiture of funding under Microsoft’s Fellowship program.”

You will be asked to upload 3 documents:

  • Your curriculum vitae, 
  • thesis proposal or
  • research statement, and one-page summary will be uploaded separately.

 Proposals must be submitted in English, and accepted formats are docx, doc, and pdf. Email or hard-copy submissions will not be considered. Name the individual files using the convention indicated below. Include your first name and last name as part of your file name each separated by an underscore (e.g. Jane_Smith_cv.docx).

Curriculum vitae – file name: cv

Thesis proposal or research statement (short and concise is recommended—no more than two pages including references with font no smaller than 10-point) – file name: thesis

Summary of the above thesis proposal or research statement (no more than 150 words; font no smaller than 10-point) – file name: summary

You will be asked to request 2 letters of recommendation (third one being optional) via the submission portal:

Add the contact information (name, affiliation, email) and send the email request through the submission portal to your two or three recommenders as soon as possible so they have ample time to provide a letter. Their deadline is the same as your proposal deadline on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 at 7:00 PM UTC. They should be established researchers familiar with your research (at least one of which must be from your primary academic advisor/supervisor and only one letter can be from a current Microsoft employee). Once you send the request through the submission portal, they will receive a private link to upload a letter of recommendation for you. Please note that you and your recommenders may need to check your junk folders in order to find emails from our portal. As reference, here is a list of the various system email addresses you can add to allowed emails.

Microsoft cannot assume responsibility for the confidentiality of information submitted in the proposals. Therefore, proposals should not contain information that is confidential, restricted, or sensitive. Microsoft reserves the right to make public the information on those proposals that receive awards, except those portions containing budgetary or personally identifiable information.

Submit a Proposal

About the Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship

The Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship is a global program that identifies and empowers the next generation of exceptional computing research talent. Microsoft recognizes the value of diversity in computing and aims to increase the pipeline of talent receiving advanced degrees in computing-related fields to build a stronger and inclusive computing-related research community. We currently offer PhD fellowships in Asia-Pacific, Canada and the United States, EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa), and Latin America.

Over the last two decades, the Microsoft Research PhD Fellowship program has supported over 700 fellows around the world, many of whom have gone on to work at Microsoft. Others have gone on to perform pioneering research elsewhere within the technology industry or accept faculty appointments at leading universities.

Fellowships for PhD students at universities globally pursuing research aligned to the Microsoft Research areas of focus.

Key Dates and Order of Program

  • Proposals and letters of recommendation will be accepted through Wednesday, June 30, 2021 at 7:00 PM UTC
  • Recipients will be announced by mid-October 2021
  • Proposals would be reviewed by researchers at Microsoft.
  • Reviewers will rate proposals based on the technical/scientific quality and the potential impact of the proposed research.
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Emmanuella Igomu is a content writer at Camberene. She is a communication enthusiast currently studying Mass communication, where she majors in Public Relations and Advertising. Emmanuella sometimes doubles as a brand promoter/online marketer and hopes to intern in a public relations/advertising agency or online marketing department in the near future.

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