Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship 2021 Programme

By Gemma Creagh - Last update


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The Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship Programme is an established national initiative, funded by the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, and managed by the Irish Research Council.

The Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship Programme is unique in the Irish research landscape and complements other channels for funded postgraduate education in the Irish ecosystem. Among its features are:

  • individual, prestigious awards for excellent research in the name of the applicant;
  • an objective selection process using international, independent expert peer review;
  • funding across all disciplines, from archaeology to zoology;
  • awards for bottom-up, non-directed research, with the exception of those funded by our strategic funding partners.

The programme provides outstanding students with the opportunity to direct their own research at the early-career stage, working with a supervisor, in their chosen area of interest. Pioneering proposals addressing new and emerging fields of research or those introducing creative, innovative approaches are welcomed. Proposals of an interdisciplinary nature are also encouraged as it is recognised that advancing fundamental understanding is achieved by integrating information, techniques, tools and perspectives from two or more disciplines.

The Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship Programme is highly competitive, with an average success rate of 18% over the past five years. Successful applicants who become scholars under the programme are recognised as demonstrating world-class potential as future research leaders and in the quality of their ideas.

2021 Call documentation

Terms and Conditions 2021

Environmental Protection Agency Postgraduate Scholarship 2021

Andrew Grene Postgraduate Scholarship in Conflict Resolution 2021

Countess Markievicz Postgraduate Scholarship in Female Leadership 2021

Met Éireann Postgraduate Scholarship 2021

Application Guides

Guide for Applicants

Guide for Supervisors

Guide for Research Offices

Guide for Referees

Indicative forms

Applicant form

Supervisor form

Referee form

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ v3

What is offered?

  • a stipend of €16,000 per annum
  • a contribution to fees, including non-EU fees, up to a maximum of €5,750 per annum
  • eligible direct research expenses of €2,250 per annum

How to apply

Potential applicants should read the 2021 Government of Ireland Terms and Conditions carefully to ascertain whether or not they are eligible to apply. Indicative versions of the applicant, supervisor and referee forms are provided for information purposes only. All participants must create and submit their forms via the online system.

Online Award Application

Strategic Funding Partners Scholarships

In addition to the non-directed call, a number of government departments and agencies have partnered with the Council to support scholarships in strategic research areas as a mechanism to deliver on our shared national objectives. The 2021 Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship Programme strategic funding partners are the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) – Irish Aid; the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation (DBEI); and Met Éireann.

In partnership with them, the Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship Programme invite applications for the following scholarships:

  • The Environmental Protection Agency Postgraduate Scholarship
  • The Andrew Grene Postgraduate Scholarship in Conflict Resolution (funded by DFA – Irish Aid)
  • The Countess Markievicz Postgraduate Scholarship in Female Leadership (funded by DBEI)
  • The Met Éireann Postgraduate Scholarship

The Call Documentation in the right sidebar includes full details and guidance about each of these strategic funding partner scholarships.

Please note that while applicants may apply for one scholarship theme only, those who choose to apply for a strategic funding partner scholarship will also be considered for a Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship.

Key dates

Deadline Date
Call open 3 September 2020
FAQ deadline 22 October 2020
Applicant deadline 16:00 (Irish time) 29 October 2020
Supervisor and referee deadline 16:00 (Irish time) 5 November 2020
Research office endorsement deadline 16:00 (Irish time) 12 November 2020
Call outcome End of March 2021
Scholarship start date 1 September 2021

Please note that the timings provided here are indicative and may be subject to change.

If you do not find the answer to your query in the call documentation, you should contact the research office in your proposed institution which will provide information and clarification on the call. Research offices can send any queries they are unable to clarify to postgrad@research.ie.

For reasons of transparency and fairness to all applicants, the Council will not enter into written or telephone correspondence with any individual about the assessment process or their eligibility to apply.


Gemma Creagh

Visioning the Future of Artistic Research Doctorates in Ireland
IRC-ESO Studentship Programme


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