Call for Application for PhD Dissertation Research Grant 2023/2024


As one of pioneer Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in Ethiopia, Haramaya University (HU) has been confidently evolving from a dominant teaching institution to a research university with a vision to become one of the best research universities in Africa by the year 2030. Haramaya University has been differentiated as one of the research Universities following the differentiation of universities by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education (MoSHE). This will enable the University to focus largely on research and postgraduate programs. The Office of Research Affairs has been committed to supporting the realization of the university’s special mission, which has been identified as a strategic mandate in the 10-year strategic plan:

        • to produce competent graduates with special emphasis on graduate programs in various fields of study.
        • to conduct innovative, problem solving and cutting-edge research, and disseminate research outputs and technologies for sustainable development; and

In line with this, the office initiated new grant scheme known as Haramaya University Grand Challenge Research Grant (HUGG) aimed to fund multi-year (2-4 years) and multi-/trans-disciplinary research with relatively large budgets and more impactful results. It was also intended to support multi/trans-disciplinary large project that can recruit PhD and/or MSc/MA students. Since 2014, the university has reorganized its research priorities into six thematic areas and funding knowledge-generating, problem-solving and cutting-edge research projects on a competitive basis under five research grant categories. Although these research grants are intended for academic staff members of the university, who are expected to engage in research activities with 25% of their time in accordance with the HU senate legislation, postgraduate students are expected to engage in and benefit from HU Staff Research Grants, nesting their thesis research under broader project topic of the staff grant holder.

Yet this arrangement limits graduate students to come up with their own novel ideas. To this end, it is strongly believed that funding graduate students innovative research undertakings can have enormous impacts on the quality and outputs of the university research. It also believed to enable the students and their mentors to generate novel research findings and share with the international community through publications that increase the reputation and visibility of the university globally.

Therefore, Office of Research Affairs wishes to announce the 2022/2023 PhD dissertation research support for HU PhD students enrolled at one of the colleges/institutes of the University. For the moment, the grant is only open to PhD students and limited number of PhD students will be awarded the grant due to budget constraints, with due consideration that MSc/MA students can benefit from research funds of HU staff grant holders and HUGG which also aimed to recruit and involve postgraduate students. It is a competitive research grant and vetted through merit-based and peer-reviewed processes.

Eligibility Criteria

PhD students who meet the following conditions are eligible to apply for this grant:

  • PhD student enrolled at one of the colleges/institutes of the University
  • PhD student who has successfully defended his/her dissertation research proposal and approved at the school/department level and have not yet started or completed her/his research work (field and laboratory activities or experiment) at the time of application.
  • PhD student who doesn’t have any external funding source and need to enclose a signed cover letter (from major advisor and the head of College/Institute (Dean/CED/SD)) confirming the same during the application.
  • The proposed research project should directly address the priority research area identified for 2023/24 call for Proposal for HU Staff Research Grants.
  • Geographical area of implementation of the proposed project should be in the eastern part of Ethiopia except for compelling reasons.
  • Women and self-sponsored postgraduate students with innovative research ideas are highly encouraged to apply.

 Other requirements 

  • The PhD student has to assign one of his/her dissertation advisors affiliated to one of the colleges/institute of Haramaya University as Principal Investigator (PI) of the research project.
  • The PhD student will be funded if and only if the research activities require additional funds in addition to the budget covered by MoE/any other funding organization.
  • All PhD students applying for this grant have to provide letter from their respective Chairman/Major advisor of the Ph.D. advisory committee and school/department about the status of their research. The postgraduate students who have started their research will only apply for funding for activities that they did not undertake prior to applying for this grant.
  • The Office of Research Affairs will support PhD students’ research work with a maximum value of 100,000.00 ETB per student. Funds cannot be used to supplement their non-PhD research works.
  • The budget allocated for personnel costs should not exceed 30% of the total proposed budget.
  • The PhD student who awarded the grant shall produce at least two published article on peer-review journals indexed in either of indexing databases (Scopus, PubMed, Web of Science).

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted via online Research Grant Management System ( Researchers need to create an account or log in to their existing account to apply for research grant.

The submitted proposal must

  •      Strictly follow the proposal writing format. A proposal which doesn’t follow the format will be automatically rejected and will not be considered for evaluation
  •        not exceed 25 pages (12 pts, Times New Roman, 1.5 spacing, 1 inch margin in all sides). 
Important Time tables
2024 15 March
Deadline for proposals submission Online grant management system closes
2024 18 March
Primary screening of the proposals
2024 26-29 March
Presentation of selected proposals
2024 04 April
Research steering committee approval
2024 08 April
Announcement of proposals selected for grant

The Office will not entertain any request related to deadline extension and deadlines which are explicitly mentioned in the call must be respected. The online Research Grant Management System closes at 15 March 2024 at 4:00 pm. Researchers are recommended to submit the application as early as they can than waiting until the deadline for their application to avoid any difficulties which might occur on the deadline day.

Evaluation Process

The evaluation consists of a primary screening, secondary evaluation (expert review) and final RSC decision. The primary screening is an administrative process to verify that eligibility requirements are met, and that required formatting is complete. Secondary evaluation is conducted by experts from subject area of the submitted proposal. The shortlisted proposals will be reviewed at the RSC level and a list of proposals that may be funded will be drawn up from the list based on the available budget.

The following templates are provided as
downloadable files with this call for applications

Annex 01: Proposal preparation guide

Annex 02: Budget Breakdown template

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