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Swiss Excellence Scholarships for Foreign Scholars

The Swiss Government, through the Federal Commission for Scholarships for Foreign Students (FCS), awards various postgraduate scholarships to foreign scholars and researchers:  University scholarships (Swiss universities, Federal Institutes of Technology as well as Universities of Applied Sciences) and Arts scholarships (schools of music and fine arts, only for a limited number of countries).

These scholarships provide graduates from all fields with the opportunity to pursue doctoral or postdoctoral research in Switzerland at one of the public funded university or recognized institution. 

Host Institutions: Any of the 10 Swiss Public Universities, the two Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology, the public teaching and research institutes and the Universities of applied sciences 

Study in: Switzerland, Course starts 2013

Field of study: All academic fields

Target group: Scholarships are open to most international students from any country. 

Scholarship value/inclusions: The scholarship covers the following:

• Monthly payment of 1920 Swiss Francs for PhD studies/research or 3,500 Swiss Francs for postdoctoral research

• Exemption of the tuition fees (except for EPFL)

• Mandatory Swiss Health insurance paid by the FCS (for non-European grantees only)

• A lump sum for air fare for non-European grantees (provided at the end of the scholarship)

• Special 300 Swiss Francs lodging allowance (paid once at the beginning of the scholarship)

• 1 year half-fare public transportation card

• Counseling and various trips, dinners and sigh seeing tours organized for Swiss Government Scholarship holders 


• First class Master degree or equivalent University degree if applying for PhD studies/research or a First Class Doctoral Degree if applying for a Postdoctoral research.

• For PhD studies/research, the candidate should not be more than 35 years old at the moment of the application.  For postdoctoral research, there should not be a gap of more than 5 years between the award of the PhD and the application deadline.

• Applicants should be residing in their home country at the moment of the application.  Applicants who are in Switzerland since more than 1 year are not eligible

• Applicants must provide a letter (e-mail) from a Professor from the Swiss host institution stating that he/she is willing to supervise the Research, PhD, or the Postdoctoral research. For PhD studies, applicants must apply to the chosen Swiss University as well as for the scholarship.

• Applicants must have a research proposal including a timeframe (this is the central piece of the application. The applicant must devote all required attention to it)

• Applicants must be in command of the necessary language skills required for the Research, PhD Studies or the Postdoctoral research. 

Important: The eligibility criteria and conditions may vary per country. Please see the specific eligibility criteria of your country. 

Application instructions: See the country-specific WebPages for eligibility criteria, application procedure, deadlines, and contact information specific to your country.  If you fulfill the eligibility requirements, contact the Swiss diplomatic representation in your country of origin. The diplomatic representation will provide you with all the necessary information regarding the procedure including application forms and a list of required documentation.

Applications are subject to preliminary selection by the relevant national authorities and/or the Swiss diplomatic representation. The short-listed applications are then analyzed by the Federal Commission for Scholarships for Foreign Students (FCS) which subsequently takes the final decision.

The application deadline falls between the end of October and early November 2012, depending on the Swiss Embassy to which the applications have to be submitted.

Deadline: Varies, around Oct-Nov

Website: http://www.sbf.admin.ch/htm/themen/bildung/stipendien/eskas_en.html

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