Overview of Robert S. McNamara Fellowships Program (RSMFP)
2022 World Bank PhD Scholarship for Developing Countries: The World Bank’s Robert S. McNamara Fellowships Program (RSMFP) pairs aspiring development economists from developing countries with World Bank research economists, providing the fellows with unique opportunities to participate in rigorous policy-relevant research in the Development Economics Vice Presidency (DEC).
Fellows will spend eight months (September to May each year) at the World Bank in Washington, D.C., working under the supervision of experts from the World Bank’s Development Impact Evaluation (DIME) and Development Research Group divisions on high-quality, policy-relevant research projects.
Fellows will study current research standards, gain new econometric skills, and network with leading researchers in their field through working with World Bank DEC experts and their external academic collaborators from top universities.
They will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take part in rigorous policy-relevant research and broaden their view on potential development issues and how their research might address obstacles in developing countries.
Why World Bank PhD Scholarship? Key Program Features
Fellows will work on World Bank projects under the supervision of World Bank DEC experts, receive training in cutting-edge research methodologies and technology, and participate in World Bank operations.
Fellows may contribute to DEC’s published work, coauthor with DEC researchers, join field missions, or actively engage with World Bank clients, depending on the nature of the initiatives.
At the start of the programme, fellows will get a one-week technical onboarding, which will include training on reproducible research procedures. Fellows will participate in hands-on trainings and seminars led by leading economists throughout the programme to further develop their skills.
Fellows will improve their abilities to identify, understand, and write about critical development policy issues by working with DEC economists.
Within DEC, fellows will be asked to produce a blog based on their fellowship research. This is an opportunity for them to highlight their research and contribute to policy conversations on development. The best four blogs will be featured on DEC’s Let’s Talk Development blog each year.
Applicants will have the option to select in the application whether they would like to be hosted by the Development Research department or the Impact evaluation department in the World Bank’s Development Economics Vice Presidency (DEC).
There are two sorts of candidates for this fellowship: (i) Pre-doctoral fellows have holds a master’s degree and are seeking research experience in preparation for a PhD application. (ii) Doctoral fellows are enrolled in a PhD programme, have finished their courses, and want to collaborate with World Bank researchers to broaden their research network.
Doctoral candidates who want to work in development research will benefit from the Fellowship since it will provide them with access to new data sources and research possibilities.
Duration of Programme
For the 8 months of the Fellowship, Fellows are to work full-time on the research project given to them. Although it is not a criterion for eligibility, it is best for doctorate students to apply when they have completed their education and are solely doing research, but are not yet looking for work.
Field of Study eligible for the Fellowship
Fellows must have a degree in a discipline relevant to development economics. Economics, public policy, political science, data science, statistics, international development, sociology, and mathematics are just a few examples. Although quantitative methods courses, like as statistics and econometrics, is not technically necessary for eligibility, most partnering projects strongly desire it.
2022 World Bank PhD Scholarship for Developing Countries- Eligibility
To be eligible for the RSMFP, applicants must be:
- Nationals of World Bank WBG member countries, with preference to nationals of developing countries;
- Fluent in English;
- Graduates of master’s level studies or currently pursuing a PhD in Economics or a related field;
- No more than 35 years of age (by June 30 2022);
- Available to relocate to Washington, D.C. for the duration of the fellowship.
Eligible pre-doc candidates must complete their master’s level studies by June 30th, 2022.
2022 World Bank PhD Scholarship for Developing Countries- Selection Process
Applications for the fellowship are open annually between March and April for cohorts starting in September of the same year. Applicants must submit:
- An updated CV
- A statement of purpose describing their research interests, professional objectives, and discussing their qualifications as development researchers
- Contact details for a reference who can provide a letter of recommendation (Successful candidates are to submit letter of reference)
- A writing sample (optional)
- A code sample (optional)
Fellowships will be given out depending on the merits of the application materials, understanding of relevant economic methodologies, and proficiency with the requisite statistical software. Geographic and gender diversity will be a goal of cohort creation.
Benefits of Robert S. McNamara Fellowships Program (RSMFP)-Fellowship Funding Coverage
The RSMFP was founded in 1982 by a resolution of the Executive Directors to provide fellowships to young scholars pursuing studies in economic development-related subjects.
The governments of Bangladesh, China, India, Kuwait, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, and the former Yugoslavia initially funded the programme.
The Government of Japan is supporting a two-year pilot effort offering funding for fellows from the pool of recent JJ/WBGSP graduates to compete for a fellowship opportunity with RSMFP, thanks to a collaboration with the Joint Japan/World Bank Graduate Scholarship Program (JJ/WBGSP).
For an 8-month fellowship, the RSMFP offers competitive salary, totaling $42,750 net of income taxes per fellow (paid in monthly installments).
The World Bank’s HR Operations unit will assist the successful candidate with their G4 visa application.
Fellows are responsible for all travel and accommodation arrangements, including their costs.
How to Apply for RSMFP
- An application form is available online and will take up to 30 minutes to fill it.
- Applicants has to provide a personal statement of around 500 words
- Applicants are to submit the following documents in pdf format:
- 1 Reference Letter
- Resume (Curriculum vitae)
- Writing Sample
- Statement of Purpose
Applications deadline for the 2022 cohort is between March 7 and April 4, 2022.
For the time being, we anticipate the 2022 cohort staying in Washington, D.C. for the duration of the fellowship. If the COVID-19 situation worsens, this could change. Any modifications will be reported to the Fellows as soon as possible.
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