- How do I apply?
The application is available online. Please read the application guidelines before beginning your application.
- What is meant by early career? Is there a profile of a candidate that is the target of the application?
Early to mid-career entrepreneurial and self-starter professionals with a graduate degree in a public-policy related field (e.g., JD, MPA, MPH) and a minimum of three to five years of full-time work experience. Postdoctoral candidates and practitioners active in the public or private sectors with a record of experience and accomplishment in a public policy related area are encouraged to apply. Candidates with field-specific background applicable to public policy (e.g., Energy, Agriculture, Engineering) are preferred.
- Do I have to know a foreign language?
- Peru- Advanced (Superior) Spanish is required.
- Burma - Burmese language fluency is not required but helpful.
- Coite d’Ivoire - Proficiency in French is required.
- Ukraine – Basic level of Ukrainian or Russian language skills for some specific ministries is preferred; others work in English on a regular basis
Fulbright Public Policy Fellows will be required to carry out a position in a foreign government ministry effectively and seamlessly. Meeting the language requirements is critical for completing the daily requirements of the professional placement. For research grant activity, language fluency sufficient to complete the research project is required. For applicants without local language proficiency, feasibility of conducting research must be demonstrated in both the project statement and the language self-evaluation form of the Fulbright application. Non-native speakers who have local language abilities will be asked to also register an external evaluator within the application.
- Do I need to have an invitation letter?
A letter of invitation should not be sought/is not required for professional placement. Applicants should not contact potential host ministries to organize or advocate for a placement. Placements are negotiated directly between the U.S. Embassy and the Host Ministry. A letter of invitation from organization or academic institution supporting the research component is also not required but may be submitted.
- If I am selected, can I take my family with me on my grant?
Dependent benefits are not available under the Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship.
- Can I apply to more than one country?
Applications should be written with a focus on one country, Interest in a second country may be identified on the application, applicants must meet all requirements for each country to which they are applying.
- Can I apply to the Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship if I am on the Fulbright Specialist Roster?
You are allowed to apply to the Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship while on the Fulbright Specialist roster. Recipients of a Fulbright Specialist Program grant are not required to adhere to the two-year waiting period before applying for a Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship grant. Likewise, recipients of a Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship grant are not required to adhere to the two-year waiting period before applying for a Fulbright Specialist Program grant.
- How can I make my application more successful?
There is no "formula" for a successful grant. Each individual's application should be about the candidate, how the grant time will be spent, and what outcomes can be reasonably expected. What is successful for one applicant may not be effective for another applicant. See our application guidelines for tips on making your application more competitive.
- Who should write my reference letters?
While it is useful to have someone with a known reputation in the field, the best criteria for recommendations is someone who knows your work and character extensively. We also advise mixing internal (individuals at your current place of work) and external letters (individuals outside of your current place of work, but who know you well) to demonstrate the breadth of your contacts. Professional references who can speak to your practical work experience and skillset are encouraged; references who are only able to discuss your academic/classroom experience are accepted but not preferred.
- What type of research project will be accepted?
Research projects should be an independent, public policy focused proposal that identifies and addresses the needs and interests of the host ministry and host country; demonstrates potential to advance knowledge, and to establish lasting connections and ties with the host country. A smaller component of the Fellowship 20% of total time), the independent research project must be carried out in consultation with the ministry, on a schedule that meets the ministry project timeline/goals/etc for your specific assignment.
Examples of successful past projects and placements include:
- Examining opportunities to strengthen inter-ministry collaboration for public health
- Implementing alternative dispute resolution mechanisms
- Supporting corruption prevention practices
- Assisting with trade negotiation preparations
- Examining intercultural-bilingual education quality
- Streamlining renewable energy policies related to geothermal law
- Conducting census mapping of community health workers
- How is my application reviewed and how am I notified?
Applications are reviewed by Peer Review Committee comprised of public policy professionals and academics. Recommended applications will be reviewed by the US Embassy or Fulbright Commission in the host country, followed by interviews. IIE will notify candidates of their selection status.
- What are the financial benefits of Fulbright awards?
Monthly benefits will follow the rates for Core Fulbright U.S. Scholar grants in each proposed country. See awards.cies.org for more details. Dependent benefits are not available under the Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship. Final grant amounts will be determined prior to the start of the 2021-22 academic year and are subject to the availability of congressionally appropriated funds. The United States Department of State reserves the right to alter, without notice, participating countries, number of awards and allowances.
Round-trip, economy-class, international travel for the grantee provided. Relocation Allowance of $500 provided.
A $750 research and professional development allowance is provided to be used for research materials; expenses related to the placement such as site visits, training, or materials.
Final grant amounts will be determined prior to the start of the 2021-2022 academic year and are subject to the availability of funds. The United States Department of State reserves the right to alter, without notice, participating countries, number of awards and allowances.
The Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship provides opportunities for U.S. early and mid-career professionals and practitioners to serve in placements in a foreign government ministry or institution around the world. Fulbright Public Policy Fellows build mutual understanding and contribute to strengthening the public sector while cultivating public policy experience in their area of expertise. The Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship also includes an independent research component that focuses on an issue related to the Fellow's in-country work.
The Fellows will have an opportunity to build their knowledge and skills, provide support to partner-country institutions, and promote long-term ties between the U.S. and the partner country.
Participating Countries and Eligible Disciplines
Applications will be accepted in any public policy applicable area. The fields and focus areas listed below are of specific interest to the participating countries, but applications in all related public policy fields are encouraged.
Fields: Combatting gender-based violence, social inclusion, anti-corruption, equality, integration, sustainability, dialogue and reconciliation, identity and diversity
Potential Host Ministries/Focus Areas: Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Energy and Mines, Ministry of Women and Vulnerable Populations, Ministry of Development and Social Inclusion, Ministry of Production, Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Transportation and Communications, Ministry of the Environment, Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Housing and Construction, Ministry of Labor, Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Mesa de Concertación de Lucha contra la Pobreza (a multiparty group that works on policies to fight poverty), and the National Council for Science, Technology, and Technical Innovation (CONCYTEC), among others
Language: Advanced (superior) Spanish is required.
Fields: Economics, Economic Development, Public Administration, Public/Health, Education, Environmental Science, Environmental Policy, Political Science, Agriculture, Energy, Drug Issues, Policy on Rehabilitation of Drug Users, Cyber Crimes & Cyber Security, Media
Potential Host Ministries: Health, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation, Parliament
Language: Fulbright Public Policy Fellows for Burma do not need language proficiency skills, though they are helpful. Fellows communicating in English are strongly encouraged to use simple, clear English spoken slowly with counterparts until their facility with English is clear.
Fields: Ministry of Security sector reform, environment and sustainable development, customs reorganization, justice and human rights, construction and urban planning, commerce and industry, and entrepreneurship
Potential Host Ministries: Ministry of Water and Forests, National Security Council, Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development, Office of the Prime Minister, Ministry of Justice/Human Rights, Ministry of Construction, Housing & Urbanization, Administration of Territory and Decentralization, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Ministry of Private Sector Promotion
Language: French proficiency is required.
Potential Host Ministries/Focus Areas: Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports; Ministry of Health; Ministry of Social Policy; Ministry of Education; Ministry of European and Euro-Atlantic Integration; Ministry for Veterans Affairs, Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine
Language: Level of Ukrainian depends on ministry. Preferred: basic level of Ukrainian or Russian language skills for some specific ministries; others work in English on a regular basis.
- Fellows will work with ministry officials as “technical specialists”, immersing themselves in ongoing assignments and new initiatives, at the direction and under the supervision of host government officials. They will have the opportunity to work on issues related to their sector and contribute to public policy-related projects that benefit the host country. In addition, Fellows will undertake an independent research project related to their area of expertise.
- Fellows will be hosted by their relevant ministry and spend approximately 80% of their time carrying out ministry-directed projects. Approximately 20% of their time will be dedicated to their independent research project. Fellows must work with their ministry supervisors to agree upon a schedule, which will be determined on an individualized basis and will take different forms depending on the country and the placement.
- The research project is expected to be an independent project proposed during the application phase, but should be focused on a field or sector related to the ministry placement and be adaptable to the work done in the ministry.
The minimum length of the total grant is four months and the maximum is nine months. Eight to nine-month grants are preferred. Earliest start date is July 2021; latest start date is March 2022. Grants for the Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship have a flexible start date and also flexible timeframe of a semester or academic year (4-9 months), with sufficient time to carry out the goals of the project. For Ukraine placements, preference is for grants that begin in September 2021.
Number of Awards Available:
Approximately 10 globally (expected at least two per country), depending on individual grant lengths and overall global budget
Other Required Activities:
Pre-Departure Orientation Fellows will participate in an in-person pre-departure orientation (approximately 1.5 days) in July 2021.