Future Scoping and Challenge-Based Funding
Number of recipients
In addition to being a prestigious academic exchange program, the Fulbright Program is designed to expand and strengthen relationships between the people of the United States and citizens of other nations and to promote international understanding and cooperation. To support this mission, Fulbright Scholars may be asked to give public talks, mentor students, and otherwise engage with the host community, in addition to their primary activities.
Ireland seeks and encourages the involvement of people from diverse backgrounds in all its grants.
Challenge-based funding models are an increasingly prevalent tool used by governments, philanthropists and other funders to drive research, development and innovation activities toward addressing significant societal and technical challenges. SFI is employing this approach where there is evidence for a strong underpinning role for cutting-edge science and engineering to contribute to addressing significant global challenges. The Fulbright Scholar(s) will be involved in the design and execution of novel initiatives to direct research activity towards pressing societal and technical challenges and thus drive the delivery of significant impact.
Over the period 2022-2026, Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) will lead Ireland’s National Grand Challenges Programme, which aims to support research and development to address key national challenges in the areas of the Green Transition and Digital Transformation. Scholars would be expected to collaborate with SFI officials to provide expertise and advice in a relevant discipline area (including areas aligned to the Green Transition and Digital Transformation but also those relevant to other significant societal challenges) in order to maximise the impact of SFI’s challenge-funding activities. This could include, but is not limited to, the identification and validation of compelling challenges where technology can play a role, development of impact frameworks for challenge-funding programmes, or supporting technology translation to deliver societal impact.
Subject matter experts from a broad range of areas under the banner of ‘Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics’ (STEM), as well as experts in other relevant areas such as public policy as it pertains to STEM, and innovation and entrepreneurship, will be considered. Fulbright scholars will be hosted by SFI and will assist by immersing themselves in ongoing assignments related to future scoping and challenge-based funding. Activities would include broad stakeholder engagement including the delivery of seminars, public talks, chairing of workshops, provision of expert advice on challenge criteria, assisting with the identification of international experts and engagement with the host community.
Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) is the national foundation in the Republic of Ireland with responsibility for funding oriented basic and applied research in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) with a strategic focus. It invests in academic researchers and research teams (in universities and institutes of technology) who are most likely to generate new knowledge, leading edge technologies and competitive enterprises in STEM fields. SFI also promotes and supports the study of, education in, and engagement with STEM and promotes an awareness and understanding of the value of STEM to society and, in particular, to the growth of the economy.
SFI makes grants based upon the merit review of distinguished scientists. SFI also advances co-operative efforts among education, government, and industry that support its fields of emphasis and promotes Ireland’s ensuing achievements around the world.
SFI has a staff of approximately eighty people and its offices are based in Dublin, Ireland.
6 - 9 months
September 2023 / January 2024 (flexible)
Climate and Environmental Sciences, Food Sustainability; Data/Computer Science, Health Sciences; Public Policy for STEM areas.
Competitive applications will demonstrate clear alignment with host strategy, goals or new areas of mutual interest. Typically a letter of invitation will express this adequately.
Lisa Higgins l Head of Challenge Research
Science for Society Directorate
Science Foundation Irelan
Maximum Monthly stipend $3,800.
Note that the stipend will be paid in euros and the approximate USD amount reflects the current exchange rate. No extra financial assistance for travel and accommodation.
The Commission annually requests that Irish institutions make a contribution to recommended Scholars’ grants to maximize the institution’s understanding and involvement in the Program and the impact and awareness of the Scholar’s visit, as well as to enhance the number of awards that can be offered. The institutions and locations specified in the 2023-2024 awards program have all agreed to make a generous financial contribution to the Scholar’s grant..
The Commission organizes a comprehensive two-day orientation that includes Irish language training and cultural events.
Please refer to the figures above for an estimate of total monthly Fulbright award benefits. Benefits may include a monthly base stipend, living and housing allowances, and additional one-time allowances. Benefits may vary based on a scholar's current academic rank (or professional equivalent), the city of placement, the type of award (teaching, teaching/research, or research), and the number of and duration of stay of accompanying dependents. Research-only or Professional Project grantees receive a standard stipend that is not adjusted for academic rank. In most cases, dependent benefits will not be provided to Flex grantees, or to grantees pursuing grants less than four months (or a semester) in length.
Final grant amounts will be determined prior to the start of the 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 Commission in Ireland seeks and encourages the involvement of people from diverse backgrounds in all its grants, and is particularly welcoming of applicants from under-represented institutions and ethnicities. Fulbright Alumni cite the following bonuses in coming to Ireland: English-speaking; very welcoming; family-friendly; safe; intellectually challenging in a good way; culturally rich and diverse; and accessible. Please see the Commission’s Coming to Ireland page and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion page for more information and resources.
Ireland is a friendly, engaging and vibrant country with centuries of U.S. interaction as part of its DNA. With a highly educated workforce, competitive educational system and millennia of culture, it is a popular choice for U.S. Scholar and Student applicants. The Irish Commission is particularly welcoming of applicants from under-represented institutions, ethnicities, etc. See more here and at I am Fulbright.
Higher education in Ireland is provided by eight universities, fourteen institutes of technology, colleges of education and a number of specialist colleges in art, law, music, public administration and theology. There are also a significant number of well-funded research centres see here and culture & heritage host options.
Most Irish colleges operate on a two-semester academic year: September to December and January to May. A small number of colleges and departments retain three trimesters: October to December, January to March and April to June. Further information on higher education in Ireland can be found here.
Most higher education institutions are supported by the Irish government; for example, universities and institutes of technology receive more than 90 percent of their income from the state. The Irish government has invested 2.5 billion euro establishing advanced centers of research, and world-class research facilities and programs that are an attractive destination for international exchange visitors.
The Commission annually offers Irish institutions an opportunity to contribute to the Fulbright Program through cost-sharing; these arrangements allow the Commission to increase the number of awards available and to maximize institutional involvement in the Program.
For academic year 2023-24, the Commission is partnering with eight Irish institutions who have agreed, in advance, to cost-share awards for U.S. scholars. In addition to the “All Disciplines” awards supported by the Commission, U.S. scholar proposals within this category will also be considered for cost-sharing by Irish host institutions.
Please contact the Senior Awards Manager at the Fulbright Commission in Dublin via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit our Scholar Directory to view and search all Fulbright alumni. You can also learn more about Fulbright Alumni Ambassadors.