PDP Postdoctoral Fellowship Nominations for 2022

PDP Postdoctoral Fellowship Nominations for 2022

Deadline for nominations: 31 January 2022

Opening Date: Monday, 13 December, 2021

Closing Date: Monday, 31 January, 2022

The National Research Foundation (NRF) invites Science Councils, National Facilities and Public research-performing institutions to nominate postdoctoral fellows for the PDP for the 2022 academic year. The objectives of the PDP are to:

  • Enable recently qualified doctoral graduates to gain further research experience and to thereby improve their prospects of employment in the science and technology system;
  • Develop a cohort of high-performing emerging/early career researchers in order to renew and replenish the research workforce;
  • Develop a cohort of Research Infrastructure scientists whose specialised knowledge and competencies are required by the national knowledge enterprise to ensure optimal research capability and maximum utilisation of research infrastructures; and
  • Effect a transformation in the demographics of the research workforce in South Africa by supporting Black and female emerging/early career researchers and those that are living with a disability.

The eligibility criteria for PDP Postdoctoral fellows is as follows:

  • Only bona-fide South African citizens or permanent residents may receive a PDP Postdoctoral Fellowship;
  • Full-time employees of public Research Institutions, Science Councils, Museums or National Facilities may not hold a PDP scholarship or fellowship;
  • To be appointed as a PDP Postdoctoral Fellow, the individual must have obtained his/her Doctoral degree no more than five (5) years before commencement of the PDP Postdoctoral Fellowship. In the case of female candidates that are returning after a period of absence from research due to family responsibilities, this criterion may be waivered;
  • Research Scientists are individuals that have undergone Doctoral level training and who undertake research and generate their own research outputs. In addition, they are involved in teaching and in training of postgraduate students; and
  • Research Infrastructure Scientists are individuals that have undergone Doctoral level training and who undertake research and generate their own research outputs through the utilisation of specialised research infrastructures. In addition, they are involved in teaching, training of postgraduate students and users, establishing new calibration methods and the development, design, and construction of research infrastructures.

The eligibility criteria for the PDP Postdoctoral mentors is as follows:

  • Mentors must hold a doctoral degree and have postgraduate supervision experience to host and supervise a Postdoctoral Fellow; and
  • Mentors must also hold a full-time permanent position as a researcher at the host institution, or a contract position as a researcher for the full duration of the PDP Fellowship.

The PDP programme has showed underperformance in attaining the Ministerial Guidelines targets of 80% Black and 55% women for PDP postdoctoral fellows. Nominations that will be approved for the 2022 academic year will thus prioritise Black and females to align with the Ministerial Guidelines on equity and redress.

With the available budget, approximately thirty (30) new PDP postdoctoral awards will be made for the 2022 academic year. The value of the PDP postdoctoral fellowship for 2022 shall be a maximum of R350 000.00 per annum over a three year period and this amount will be taxable.

All successful Postdoctoral fellows will be expected to complete and submit to the NRF the following:

  1. An Agreement for Grantholder-linked PDP Fellow Support;
  2. A signed three-year, fixed term, non-renewable employment contract with the host institution;
  3. Copy of South African identity document; and
  4. Proof of completion of the Doctoral degree.

Host institutions and principal investigators will be expected to contribute towards training costs, travel costs and running expenses in addition to providing the necessary infrastructure and mentorship of the PDP fellow.

Nominations must be made on the attached nomination spreadsheet for consideration by the NRF. A maximum number of six (6) nominations may be submitted to the NRF per research institution and the proposed postdoctoral fellow must only be nominated once per research institution, including those institutions with multiple campuses.

The submission deadline for nominations is 31 January 2022 for funding in the 2022 academic year.

Deadline for take up of awards is within two (2) months from the date of receiving the award letter. No extensions will be granted, including for nominated candidates who fail to complete their doctoral degree by the deadline date.

Completed nomination spreadsheets must be submitted to Ms Sphumelele Duma via email on ST.Duma@risa.nrf.ac.za

Should you have any queries with regard to the invitation requirements, please contact:

Ms Sphumelele Duma
Professional Officer – Human and Infrastructure Capacity Development (HICD) 
Telephone: 012 481 4051; E-mail: ST.Duma@risa.nrf.ac.za ; or

Ms Queen Mohohoma
Professional Officer – Human and Infrastructure Capacity Development (HICD)
Telephone: 012 481 4392 E-mail: PQ.Mohohoma@risa.nrf.ac.za

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