The Jennifer Ward Oppenheimer Research Grant (JWO Grant) is calling on the next generation of environmental researchers and conservation leaders from Africa to apply for an annual $150 000.00 grant.

Applications will open on 5 July 2019 to prospective grant recipients.

The JWO Grant is set up to honour the late Mrs Jennifer Ward Oppenheimer and to continue her contribution to and passion for Africa, the environment and cutting-edge science.

Jonathan Oppenheimer said: “Jennifer was committed to the preservation of Africa’s natural heritage, and the need for investment into science to enable development. I am delighted to be launching this annual grant in her name and excited about the potential solutions that brilliant, young researchers, from the continent, will bring to this important endeavour.”

The JWO Grant will support an African-led research programme which significantly contributes to the advancement of environmental and allied sciences – specifically to identify and address real-world issues which affect Africa.

It aims to advance recognised environmental priorities across the African continent and the globe such as those in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and the African Union’s Agenda 2063.

The Grant will be awarded annually to support a new three-year research programme. The JWO Grant will officially be launched with the announcement of the first grant winner at the annual 10th Oppenheimer Research Conference (ORC) – themed Advancing conservation consciousness – which will be held later this year between 1-3 October 2019.

Who qualifies?

The lead applicant should be an emerging African-born scientist, affiliated to a credible African institution. The proposed research should have a focus on solving African issues. The JWO Grant specifically targets inter- and multi-disciplinary research, concentrating on the natural environment, approached through a direct or supporting field. The fields include, but are not limited to:

Atmospheric sciences, Environmental technology, Archaeology, Environmental toxicology/pollution, Biology Environmental/ecological economics, Botany, Geosciences, Climate change, Hydrology, Conservation, Limnology, Ecology, Natural resource management, Energy, Oceanography, Environmental archaeology, Palaeontology, Environmental chemistry, Soil science, Environmental cultural anthropology/history, Sustainability science, Environmental engineering, Waste management, Environmental health, Water management, Environmental rehabilitation and remediation, Zoology and Environmental social science.

How to apply

The application process consists of two stages: the pre-proposal, which is open to all eligible applicants, and the full-proposal stage, which is by invitation only.

Pre-proposals must include the lead applicant’s details, a brief research concept, a project team overview, a high-level budget, a letter of support from the applicant’s institution and three references. Closing date for pre-proposals is 22 July 2019 at 5pm. Successful applicants will be notified via email.

Full proposals will include detailed technical and budget information. Invitations open 12 August and the full-proposal deadline is 9 September. The successful candidate will officially be awarded the JWO Research Grant at the annual 10th Oppenheimer Research Conference on 1 – 3 October 2019 in Midrand, Johannesburg, and will be required to present an overview of their research programme at the event.

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