International Development Scholarships

International Development Scholarships

Fortunately, there are numerous generous international development scholarships available for individuals pursuing degrees in international development.

Recognizing the significance of this field, both private organizations and governments have recognized the value of supporting students, particularly those from developing nations, who will directly benefit from these scholarships. If you can demonstrate your merit, securing scholarships should pose no difficulty.

International Development degrees come with a hefty price tag. Top-tier institutions may demand over $40,000 just for tuition, not including additional living and miscellaneous costs. The financial burden of pursuing education abroad and accessing valuable insights into community development policies shouldn’t be a source of anxiety.

International Development Scholarships

The LEG Scholarship

This exclusive scholarship program aims to support and invest in exceptional international students who have demonstrated outstanding achievements in their academic or extracurricular pursuits. Selection criteria include academic excellence, previous educational accomplishments, societal involvement, and career aspirations. Around 15 scholarships are granted annually as part of this initiative by the Faculty.

Candidates eligible for the scholarship are chosen based on several criteria, including academic performance in previous education, demonstrated by grades, test scores, publications, and letters of recommendation. Additionally, their career aspirations and potential in the chosen field of study, as well as their involvement in society through extracurricular activities, are considered. The quality and relevance of their motivation letter, as well as the overall completeness, accuracy, and consistency of their application, are also factors.

To qualify for the scholarship, students must:

  • Have a non-Dutch nationality.
  • Hold a non-Dutch secondary education degree.
  • Have been accepted into one of the specified Master’s programs.
  • Be able to meet the requirements for a Dutch visa if necessary.
  • Failure to meet any of these criteria will result in the student being ineligible for the scholarship.

Approximately 15 scholarships are granted annually, covering tuition fees and a portion of living expenses, with different amounts depending on the type of tuition fee students are required to pay. The scholarship is renewable for the second year of a 2-year Master’s program if satisfactory progress is made.

To apply, students must first apply for a Master’s program and then submit an application for the Utrecht Excellence Scholarship (UES) or UES-LEGITS, with different eligibility criteria.

Application submission involves completing UES questions and uploading required documents through the Osiris Online Application. Unlike regular UES, UES-LEGITS does not require a top 10% ranking, but applicants without such ranking must submit a general recommendation letter.

Non-EU/EEA students with a top 10% ranking may qualify for both UES and UES-LEGITS by providing proof. EU/EEA students need not consider messages regarding ineligibility. Scholarship awards are not disclosed until after the scholarship deadline and conditional admission to the program.

The Georgetown University’s Scholarship

The Global Human Development Program at Georgetown University is a comprehensive two-year, full-time master’s degree program. It features an inventive curriculum focused on practical skills and includes hands-on learning experiences.

The coursework includes fundamental subjects such as development economics, global political economy, program planning and execution, assessment and monitoring, as well as both quantitative and qualitative research methods. Additionally, it covers topics like finance, budgeting, and management.

Eligibility: The Global Human Development Program (GHD) requires applicants to have at least one year of experience in international development, with a preference for two years of professional experience. Additionally, all applicants must hold an undergraduate degree before enrolling.

Applicants must meet the following criteria for admission to the program:

  • Completion of introductory courses in macro- and microeconomics and statistics before the August enrollment (though not necessarily before application).
  • Proficiency in English and another language, demonstrated through an oral proficiency exam before graduation.
  • Strong recommendation of several years of international living, studying, and working experience.
  • Completion of either the GRE (preferred) or GMAT exam before the application deadline.
  • Selection Criteria: Scholarships will be awarded based on the overall strength of the application.
  • Number of Awards: The program offers one full scholarship and several partial scholarships.
  • Value of Georgetown University Global Human Development Program: The full scholarship covers tuition for a GHD student from sub-Saharan Africa.

In addition to coursework, students gain practical experience through:

  • A fully-funded 2-3 month international work placement for the summer field project.
  • An internship at a relevant Washington DC-based international development organization/agency for at least one academic semester.
  • A two-semester client engagement project, the capstone project, emphasizing project management and analysis.

International Development Scholarships

The Wellcome Scholarship

These scholarships, sponsored by the Wellcome Trust, aim to assist top-tier students aspiring to pursue a career in health-related social science research, specifically targeting those pursuing a Master’s degree.


Candidates applying for the MSc in Health and International Development program are eligible for this scholarship.

Selection criteria include both financial need and academic excellence.

Number of Awards: 1

Value of Award:

These scholarships are part of a grant provided by Wellcome to support the MSc program, with a maximum value of £31,088.

This sum covers the entire program fees, with any surplus available to cover living expenses.

The living allowance varies depending on fee classification, with £17,000 for UK fee candidates and £9,344 for overseas fee candidates.

Additionally, scholarship recipients can apply for up to £3,333 in research funding to support their dissertation.

Duration of Programme: Full program duration

Application Process: To be considered for LSE funding for programs starting in September 2024, applicants must:

Submit their program application

Complete the Graduate Financial Support Application Form, including Section G: Personal Statement, via the Graduate application tracker.

Receive an offer of a place (conditional or unconditional)

The CSLA Scholarship

The Civil Society Leadership Awards (CSLA) offers support to emerging leaders in regions where democratic practices and social development are under strain.

The competition for these awards is fair and based on merit. Selection depends on how well applicants align with program goals and the admission standards of participating universities. Criteria include academic excellence, professional capability, leadership potential, dedication to open society values, and language proficiency.

An international committee reviews all eligible applicants. The proposed field of study should logically connect with the applicant’s goals, and the application must be thorough. Strong candidates undergo interviews with a committee comprising university representatives, CSLA staff, and partners like the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

These awards are for Master’s degree studies. Eligibility is open to citizens of eligible countries without discrimination based on age, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or disability.

Applicants must meet several criteria, including citizenship of an eligible country, maturity, flexibility, leadership potential in civil society, a bachelor’s degree with an outstanding academic record, relevant professional experience, language proficiency, availability for pre-academic summer school and degree program commencement in 2020, ability to obtain necessary visas, and a commitment to promoting open society development in their home region.

The scholarship is fully funded, covering tuition, university fees, monthly stipends for living expenses, program-related travel, insurance, educational materials, professional development, and attendance at a regional grantee conference, including pre-academic preparation through summer schools.

The IMRD Scholarship

Individuals applying for the International Masters in Rural Development must hold citizenship in an Erasmus+ Partner Country and satisfy the IMRD admission criteria as determined by the IMRD Management Board. Additionally, candidates must fulfill the following program requirements:

Possession of a Bachelor’s degree from a recognized university, preferably in bioscience engineering or agricultural sciences (with a preference for agricultural economics), with a satisfactory academic record (at least second class or equivalent, preferably higher).

Demonstration of foundational knowledge in the following areas through academic transcripts: (i) mathematics and/or statistics, (ii) agronomy and/or biology and/or environmental sciences, and (iii) social sciences/sociology and/or rural development and/or economics.


After completing their education, beneficiaries of international development scholarships from developing nations pledge to go back to their home countries, applying their newly acquired expertise to foster social and economic progress. The evaluation of applications focuses on three key criteria: academic proficiency, professional background, and the suitability of the chosen program. Preference is granted to applicants from the public sector, especially those demonstrating a significant potential to drive development in their respective countries post-graduation.

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