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WWF Prince Bernhard Scholarships for Nature Conservation

The WWF Prince Bernhard Scholarships (PBS) programme awards grants to individuals from developing/emerging economies (East and South), who wish to pursue formal studies or mid-career professional training in the field of nature conservation.

Under the patronage of the late HRH Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands and to pay a lasting tribute to the Founder President of WWF and The 1001: A Nature Trust, the WWF Prince Bernhard Scholarship Fund for Nature Conservation was created in 1991 to help build conservation expertise and leadership in developing countries and emerging economies.

With the generous support of The 1001: A Nature Trust, the aim of the WWF Prince Bernhard Scholarships is to provide financial support to individuals who wish to pursue short-term professional training or formal studies that will help them contribute more effectively to conservation efforts in their country. Each scholarship empowers a dedicated conservationist to build his or her capacity. In turn, these people are in a position to share the benefits of their knowledge and skills with others and so spread the benefits.

The Prince Bernhard Scholarships are:

  • Enabling – help people be more effective to achieve conservation
  • Developmental – nurture scholars to become conservation leaders
  • Multiplying – inspire graduates to train others.

Country of origin

Only nationals from Africa, Asia/Pacific, Latin America/Caribbean, Eastern Europe & Middle East will be considered, including WWF staff or candidates working as partners with WWF. Applicants must provide written proof of acceptance on a course, and proof that they are also seeking funding from other sources. Preference is given where appropriate to those who seek support for studies in their country or region.

Scholarship value

The maximum amount for any one scholarship under this scheme is CHF 10,000. Only in exceptional circumstances will the maximum award be granted. Maximum of one year

WWF's Expectations

  • After completion of their studies Prince Bernhard Scholars are expected to return to their home country or region to work in conservation, or a related field.
  • If accepted, and upon completion of the course, the Prince Bernhard Scholar must provide a final report on the activity undertaken and how it was conducted, with an itemized account of the use made of the funds.
  • The Prince Bernhard Scholar will then receive a PBS Certificate and is invited to join the WWF Volunteer, Intern & Prince Bernhard Scholar Alumni group on Facebook.
Countries eligible for this scholarship
  • Algeria
  • Angola
  • Australia
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Belarus
  • Benin
  • Bhutan
  • Botswana
  • Brunei
  • Bulgaria
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • Cambodia
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Cape Verde
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • Chile
  • China
  • Comoros
  • Congo - Brazzaville
  • Congo - Kinshasa
  • Cook Islands
  • Czechia
  • Côte d’Ivoire
  • Djibouti
  • Egypt
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Eritrea
  • Ethiopia
  • Fiji
  • French Polynesia
  • Gabon
  • Gambia
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Hungary
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kenya
  • Kiribati
  • Kuwait
  • Laos
  • Lebanon
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Libya
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia
  • Maldives
  • Mali
  • Marshall Islands
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mayotte
  • Micronesia
  • Moldova
  • Mongolia
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Nauru
  • Nepal
  • New Caledonia
  • New Zealand
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Niue
  • North Korea
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palau
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Qatar
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Rwanda
  • Réunion
  • Samoa
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Seychelles
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Solomon Islands
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • South Sudan
  • Sri Lanka
  • St. Helena
  • Sudan
  • Swaziland
  • Syria
  • São Tomé & Príncipe
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Timor-Leste
  • Togo
  • Tonga
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Tuvalu
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United States
  • Vanuatu
  • Vietnam
  • Western Sahara
  • Yemen
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Application requirements

Candidates should ensure they fulfill the following eligibility criteria:

  • Application form correctly filled in, accompanied by copies of qualification certificates and letter(s) of reference.
  • Evidence of conservation commitment: candidate employed in conservation or showing long-term commitment to conservation, including WWF staff or candidates working as partners with WWF.
  • Evidence of acceptance on the desired course, which should be linked to WWF’s conservation priorities (see selection criteria below).
  • Request for support for a) studies or training course lasting one year or less; or b) final year of multiple-year studies, starting no earlier than 1 July 2018 and no later than 30 June 2019.
  • Requests for funding of studies beginning before 1 July 2018 can unfortunately not be considered.
  • Request for support not exceeding CHF 10,000 (include evidence of supplementary support if course costs are over this amount); and indicate an additional funding source irrespective of costs.
  • Candidate from Africa, Asia /Pacific, Latin America/Caribbean, Eastern Europe or Middle East.

The Prince Bernhard Scholarships (PBS) are for studies or training lasting one year or less. Multiple-year studies, e.g. two or three-year BSc or MSc courses,  will only be considered if the candidate is applying for support for the last year of studies. Applications are encouraged from people seeking to build skills in specific subjects that will enhance their contribution to nature conservation. In particular, women and people working for non-governmental or community-based organizations are encouraged to apply.

How to apply

Visit the WWF Prince Bernhard Scholarship programme website. The Application Form can be downloaded in the righthand column (with information on how to complete the form in English, French & Spanish). Applications should be submitted to the candidate's nearest WWF or Associate Office and the deadline for submission is beginning of January each year. The list of WWF Office Contacts for PBS (showing the countries represented on this programme) can also be downloaded in the righthand column.

Each WWF Office or Associate carries out an initial screening of the applications they receive and make their recommendations to the PBS Selection Committee, which meets end of April each year. Only those applications recommended by a WWF Office or Associate (accompanied by the completed WWF Recommendation Form) will be considered.

WWF Prince Bernhard Scholarship Fund for Nature Conservation
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