PhD Research Scholarship

PhD Research Scholarship deadline

In November 2005, SEARCA established the PhD Research Scholarship, which provides financial support to qualified PhD students whose researches are relevant to the priority thrusts of SEARCA (see scholarship statistics).

The PhD research scholarship aims to:

  • Provide PhD students the opportunity to use the resources and facilities available at SEARCA and its network of universities for their research;
  • Produce quality research papers for publication; and
  • Enable them to work with SEARCA's R&D personnel on mutually identified areas of concerns/interests in agriculture and rural development.


Priority 1. Southeast Asian nationals who are enrolled in PhD programs in any of the member universities under the Southeast Asian University Consortium for Graduate Education in Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC)1.

Priority 2. Southeast Asian nationals who are regular staff members of government agencies or non-profit development-oriented institutions, and are PhD students of agricultural universities outside of UC.

Research Topics

The topic of the applicant's PhD research must be aligned with SEARCA's thrusts of Inclusive and Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development (ISARD) towards food security and poverty alleviation in Southeast Asia. Specifically, its focus must be in any of the following areas:

Social Inclusion in Agriculture and Rural Development
Participation of poor and vulnerable sectors of rural societies in food and agricultural value chains and agribusiness commodity systems;
Food and nutrition security for poor and vulnerable sectors of rural societies; and
Productivity-enhancing innovations and modern technologies.
Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development
Natural resource management;
Climate change mitigation and adaptation in agriculture and natural resource management; and
Resilience of agricultural systems to climate impacts.
Regional and Sub-regional Cooperation
Sub-regional cooperation in trade and investments; and
Regional market, trade, and economic integration.
Institutions and Governance
Government policies, institutions, and governance mechanisms and reforms for ISARD.

For Fiscal Year 2019-2020, priority will be given to research grant applications that are anchored on any of the topics defined by the project "Agricultural Transformation and Market Integration in the ASEAN Region: Responding to Food Security and Inclusiveness Concerns" jointly being implemented by SEARCA and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) with financial support from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). These topics focus on priority commodities such as root and cash crops, fruits, vegetables and livestock, among others; value chain studies; and specific topics identified during the National Inception Workshops organized in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Philippines and Viet Nam, and during the Regional Launch Workshop held in October 2016 in the Philippines (see ATMI-ASEAN Thesis Grant Topics List).

Scholarship Benefits

Research funds not to exceed USD 4,500 and optional internship at SEARCA for up to two (2) months. For those who will avail of the internship, additional scholarship fund may be allocated to cover travel expenses to and from SEARCA, travel and accident insurance, and stipend during the period of internship.

Application Procedure

Applicants must fill out online the SEARCA PhD Research Scholarship application form and upload a copy of all required documents.

The following are the required documents to be submitted:

  1. Letter of application for the research scholarship which should be addressed to the SEARCA Director;
  2. Recommendation letter from the Dean of Graduate School of the university where the applicant is pursuing the degree program;
  3. Dissertation research outline/proposal approved by the Advisory Committee and Dean of Graduate School;
  4. Budgetary requirement for the entire research duly attested and recommended by the major adviser and Dean of Graduate School;
  5. True copy of grades for courses taken, certified by the Graduate School;
  6. Letter from the applicant certifying that he/she is not receiving any other research grant from any other institution. If partial funding has been obtained from other sources, applicant must submit a certification from the funding agency indicating the grant amount and items covered by the grant;
  7. Research timetable indicating the activities involved in the research, and the expected date of defense.

Due to the limited amount of grant per scholarship, preference shall be given to researches that are not laboratory-based.

Scholarship Statistics

Completed PhD Research Scholarship Granted

Ongoing PhD Research Scholarships Granted

Total Number of PhD Research Scholarships Granted

1 University Consortium members are Institut Pertanian Bogor (IPB), Bogor, Indonesia; Kasetsart University (KU), Bangkok, Thailand; Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM), Yogyakarta, Indonesia; Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Selangor, Malaysia; and University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB), Laguna, Philippines.