How to Request a Fulbright
The form for requesting a Specialist is now
available Online to Fulbright Commissions and
Embassies. To make a new request, log in to
the Fulbright Specialist Project Management
System. Click Here to Log in >
FSP Roster Login
Potential foreign host institutions, that have been approved by Fulbright Commissions or Embassies, will be granted user IDs and passwords by CIES to access the public FSP Roster. Click Here to Log in >
Non-U.S. Institutions Abroad Wishing to Host a Specialist
Foreign institutions interested in requesting a Fulbright Specialist must make their request through their local Fulbright Commission or the Public Affairs Office at the U.S. Embassy. CIES cannot receive project requests directly. To find out whether the program is being utilized in a specific country, host institutions should contact their local Fulbright
Commission or U.S.
Embassy Public Affairs Section.
Preferred hosts are degree-granting, post-secondary academic institutions, comparable to U.S. colleges or universities. This requirement helps to promote an important program goal of fostering linkages between U.S. and non-U.S. academic institutions of higher education. Consideration will be given to applications from non-academic institutions whose primary goals include, but are not limited to, education focused programming, the expansion of partnerships between universities and specialized institutions, or the promotion of international and cross-institutional cooperation. Potentially eligible hosts include non-profit, government-related, cultural, and medical institutions, as well as research organizations/think tanks.
All approved Fulbright Specialist projects must go through the Roster matchmaking process. However, host institutions are allowed to request a specific candidate when submitting their project proposal.
Roster candidates may be contacted by a potential host institution prior to their submitting a project in order to assist in the development of that project. Alternatively, Roster candidates may approach colleagues and counterparts at overseas post-secondary, degree granting academic institutions to propose possible Fulbright Specialist Projects for which the potential host may apply.
By being proactive and cooperating with a host institution in developing a project, a scholar has a much better chance of receiving a grant during his or her five-year term on the Specialist Roster.
It is important for both Roster candidates and host institutions to remember that all proposals MUST be approved by the U.S. Embassy or Fulbright Commission and the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. There are no guarantees that a project will be approved. Also, the timeline for the approval process of Roster applicants is different from the timeline for the review and approval of Specialist projects.
Projects should be submitted by host institutions to the U.S. Embassy or Fulbright Commission with at least two months’ lead time. More time is needed for projects if no specific candidate has been identified or if the preferred candidate has not yet joined the Roster.
Each Embassy and Commission is limited to the number of Specialists it can sponsor per fiscal year, so in countries where the Fulbright Specialist Program is popular, there may be a project review cycle. In order to plan and time a project appropriately, it is imperative that host institutions contact the U.S. Embassy or Fulbright Commission as early as possible to determine whether such a cycle exists. Communication with the Commission or U.S. Embassy prior to project submission is crucial to developing a competitive project.
The U.S. Embassy or Fulbright Commission is not required to sponsor any projects, so decisions made at that level should be considered final. Note that some Embassies or Commissions may choose to prioritize certain disciplines above others or otherwise use the Fulbright Specialist Program in country-specific ways.
Once a project gains the support from the Embassy or Commission, the project information is then forwarded to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA.) ECA reviews the project to make sure it is in line with the goals and guidelines of the Fulbright Specialist Program. Common reasons for projects not being approved include insufficient lead time, insufficient cost-share details, projects involving personal or collaborative research, and projects outside of the disciplines eligible under FSP.
A potential host institution requests the Fulbright Specialist Project Request Form from the Fulbright Commission or the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy.
The potential host institution (or the Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassy) completes the form.
The Commission or Public Affairs Section may provide guidance and support to the institution as they prepare the proposal. Note: A potential host may at this point include the name of a preferred candidate on the proposal form.
Once the form is complete, it is submitted to the Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassy for approval. Note: Each country participating in the Fulbright Specialist Program has a limited number of projects it can submit each calendar year. Some Fulbright Commissions and U.S. Embassies administer a competition to select their quota of projects. Full authority for the choice of proposals is held by Fulbright Commission or Public Affairs staff of the U.S. Embassy. CIES has no role in project approvals.
The Commission or Embassy approves the project and submits it online to the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) at the U.S. Department of State for final approval.
ECA reviews the project and may contact the Commission or Embassy for clarification or revision. ECA either approves or rejects the project. Approved projects are forwarded to CIES for grants administration.
CIES processes approved requests by contacting potential Specialist Roster candidates to ascertain their availability and interest. Candidate's curriculum vitae are forwarded to the Commission or Embassy and the host institution for final selection.
For projects submitted with a requested scholar, the named scholar is contacted first by CIES to ascertain his or her availability. In such cases the named request is the priority candidate but is not guaranteed selection as the final grantee.
For projects without a named request, eligible qualified candidates will be contacted to ascertain availability and interested in the project. The candidates will be asked to submit a two page summary outlining their qualifications for and approach to the current project. This summary and the candidate’s application from the Roster will then be forwarded to the Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassy for final selection.
The Commission or Embassy informs CIES of its final selection. All candidates are informed of their status. At this point the project moves into grants administration.
The Fulbright Specialist Program is active in all world regions.
Countries eligible to participate in the program include those where there is a U.S. embassy or a Fulbright Commission. If a country has not participated in the Fulbright Specialist Program and wishes to inquire about their eligibility, they should contact CIES. Lists of these countries can be found at Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy and Fulbright Commission.
Although Roster candidates can initiate the development of a Specialist project by contacting colleagues and contacts at a potential host institution, they may not focus on personal or clinical medical research and related projects involving patient contact. All Fulbright Specialist Projects must consist of activities that directly benefit the potential host institution, such as:
- Conducting needs assessments, surveys, institutional or programmatic research
- Taking part in specialized academic programs and conferences
- Consulting with administrators and instructors of post-secondary, degree granting academic institutions on faculty development
- Presenting lectures at graduate and undergraduate levels
- Participating in or lead seminars or workshops at overseas host institutions
- Developing and/or assessing academic curricula or educational materials
- Conducting teacher-training programs at the degree granting level
Roster candidates should not pressure faculty or administrators of potential host institutions to submit projects requesting their services.
Eligible disciplines for the Fulbright Specialist Program are listed. Each eligible discipline has designated specializations. To view the available specializations in each field, click on the discipline name. At the time of application, an applicant will select a discipline and one specialization from the list of available specializations within the discipline selected. Additional specializations may be entered in the “Additional Expertise” section of the application.
Requiring applicants to select a primary discipline and specialization assists prospective applicants in discerning whether they are eligible to apply to the Fulbright Specialist Program. CIES uses the primary disciplines and specializations to assign applicants during the peer review process. The discipline you select must match your academic and professional credentials.
The discipline categories are also used by CIES in matching Roster candidates with projects, although they do not preclude Roster candidates from participation in grant opportunities that are outside their primary discipline but for which they are qualified. Identification by primary discipline and specialization is not intended to pigeonhole applicants or Roster candidates.
Costs for a Fulbright Specialist grant are shared by the host institution and the U.S. Department of State.
The host institution is responsible for the cost of housing, meals and any necessary, program related, in-country transportation. In-country costs may be supplied by the host institution as in-kind services and/or monies paid directly to the grantee. Note that in-country transportation refers to transportation once the Specialist has arrived in the city of the activity, and not to flights taken as part of the international travel.
CIES administers the U.S. State Department funds for the international travel costs, to be paid prior to departure, and a $200 per day honorarium, to be paid upon return and completion of an online final report and travel expense report. The $200 is paid for every day of the grant period, including weekends and travel days.
Approved Roster candidates remain on the Roster for 5 years and can receive up to two Specialist grants during that period.
The five-year period begins on the date of Roster approval and the calendar year of a grant is determined by the start date of the project. Two years must elapse between Specialist grants.
All Specialist grantees must depart from and intend to return to the United States after a project.
U.S. residency (the 50 states and its territories) is a requirement for selection of a candidate for a Fulbright Specialist grant. All grantees are expected to reside in the United States or U.S. territories at the time of selection and plan to return to the U.S. on completion of the grant.
Roster candidacy does not guarantee you will receive a Specialist grant.
Each country receives a limited number of grants and determines which projects it wishes to submit for funding.
Candidates on the Roster are not Fulbright Specialist Grantees.
Now that you have been approved for the Fulbright Specialist Roster, you are considered a Roster Candidate. It is not until you receive a Fulbright Specialist grant that you become a Fulbright Specialist grantee.
Receiving a Specialist Grant means you must wait 2 years to apply for a traditional, long-term Fulbright Grant.
Under the revised eligibility rules, Specialist grantees must wait two years after the conclusion of their Specialist grant before applying for a traditional U.S. Fulbright Scholar award.
The Fulbright Specialist grant is driven by the needs of host institutions and goals of the Fulbright Commissions and Public Affairs Offices of U.S. Embassies.
Each Fulbright Commission or Public Affairs Office determines the best process for approving project proposals. It is up to the host to investigate how the Commission or Public Affairs Office receives, processes, and approves Specialist projects. CIES does not maintain information on each Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassy’s deadlines or internal guidelines pertaining to the Fulbright Specialist Program.
Individual Fulbright Commissions or U.S. Embassies may have deadlines for project submission.
Although CIES receives and administers projects on a rolling basis, various Fulbright Commissions and U.S. Embassies have initiated competitions for their quota of projects each year, which may include a project submission deadline. CIES does not maintain information on each Fulbright Commission or U.S. Embassy’s deadlines or internal guidelines pertaining to the Fulbright Specialist Program.
Grantees must inform themselves of their host country’s visa, medical and security requirements.
Because each country has different visa and security requirements, deadlines and other grant requirements will differ by country. CIES does not assist in the procurement of visas. Although CIES will provide reimbursement for the cost of single-entry visas, if needed, the cost of photos, service, rush, expeditor, and postal fees are the sole responsibility of the grantee.
Specialist grantees must make necessary health-related arrangements for health insurance and inoculations; CIES does not provide health-insurance nor reimburse for medical expenses.
Grantees are responsible for ensuring they are adequately covered by their own health insurance provider while traveling and living abroad. Please consult your health insurance provider about your coverage.
Candidates must inform CIES as soon as possible if they have a health-related condition that may impact their ability to carry out grant activities or may require special accommodation.
All Fulbright Specialist Projects must be driven by the needs of the host institution and not the desires of the grantee.
Please be aware that medical facilities throughout the world may not be of the same level as major medical centers in the United States.
Although Roster candidates can initiate the Development a Project process by contacting colleagues and contacts at the potential host institution, projects may not focus on grantee research or study.