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Mapping the landscape of scholarships and fellowships in Egypt

The Challenge

In 2013, Ford’s International Fellowship Program drew to a close after 12 years. The flagship program had supported the post-secondary and graduate work of hundreds of ambitious students from countries around the world, including Egypt, enabling them to travel abroad to complete their education. After IFP closed, new players entered the funding scene, and Ford Foundation representatives wanted to learn who exactly these entities were? What is the precise nature of their interest in supporting study abroad? And, more generally, what is the impact of these new fellowship programs?

To learn the answers, Ford and the Sawiris Foundation for Social Development, convened a meeting in late 2017 of institutions that filled this funding void.

What’s in the Report

Compiled by Nayra Ijjeh, consultant to the Ford Foundation, as a document for the 2017 meeting, the report identifies and describes some 18 institutions representing Egypt-based and regionally-based private foundations as well as bilateral and foreign donors who administer a range of fellowships, scholarships and grants. Each entry provides minimal background information about the funders as well as more extensive details about the funds and programs they offer, including who qualifies for each program and what funds cover, if anything, in addition to tuition.

The report summarizes trends investigators found in examining these funders and provides general information about the types of degrees and areas of specialization recipients of these funds pursued. It identifies specific categories of people specific grants are available to, such as women and those interested in public leadership roles, and notes that there is a lack of funding opportunities for individuals interested in becoming civil servants.

Finally, the report includes questions for funders about the philosophy behind their scholarships; how they measure the impact of their disbursements; what lessons they can glean from the design of their programs; and more.