Commonwealth Professional Fellowships are offered by the CSC for citizens of developing Commonwealth countries. These fellowships are funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), with the aim of contributing to the UK’s international development aims and wider overseas interests, supporting excellence in UK higher education, and sustaining the principles of the Commonwealth.
Commonwealth Professional Fellowships support mid-career professionals from developing countries to spend a period of time at a UK host organisation working in their field for a programme of professional development.
Purpose: To provide professionals with the opportunity to enhance knowledge and skills in their given sector, and to have catalytic effects on their workplaces.
Intended beneficiaries: Mid-career professionals (with five years’ relevant work experience) working in development-related organisations in developing Commonwealth countries.
Organisations from any sector can apply either to host one or more Commonwealth Professional Fellows within their own organisation, or to nominate one or more Fellows to be hosted by another organisation with which they have links.
- Previous Professional Fellowship host organisations
- News and updates on current and former Professional Fellows
The CSC is keen to encourage creative and flexible applications for Commonwealth Professional Fellowships from a wide range of sectors – professional, charitable, public, and private. Priority will be given to applications with practical relevance in the following broadly-defined areas:
- Agriculture / fisheries / forestry
- Economic growth
- Engineering / science / technology
- Public health
Applications for Commonwealth Professional Fellowships must adhere to the following rules:
- Fellowships should normally be between one and three months in length. Applications for longer periods (up to a maximum of six months) will be considered, but only when a strong case for the additional time has been made. Fellowships should be long enough to enable the serious development of professional skills, so the CSC will not consider applications for fellowships with a duration of less than one month.
- Applications should include a clear programme of professional experience and exchange for mid-career professionals. Visits to, and periods of experience with, relevant UK organisations are particularly encouraged. Attendance at short courses or conferences during the fellowship is acceptable, providing that this can be justified within the selection criteria and that attendance is not the main focus of the fellowship.
- Fellowships should be UK-based for their full duration.
- Organisations can apply to host/nominate up to ten Fellows in one year, with no more than six in any round. The CSC will decide on the actual number of Fellows to be supported.
- Applications will not be considered from candidates who are undertaking a course of full-time study at the time of application; seeking assistance towards the cost of commencing or completing a formal academic or professional qualification; or wishing to undertake an academic programme or research of any kind in the UK. Applications presenting an academic research proposal or plan will be considered ineligible.
- Candidates who have previously taken a leave of absence to study or work abroad in a developed country should make an additional case for why they should be considered for a fellowship in the UK and make clear what they have gained from their previous experience.
Commonwealth Professional Fellowships 2017 terms and conditions – includes full details of the scheme and eligibility criteria