South African National Biodiversity Institute’s Invasive Species Programme Bursary for 2015

Positions Available

4 x Honours; 6 x Masters; 3 x Doctoral; 2 x Post-doctoral bursaries are available to conduct research on various aspects of managing invasions as part of the Department of Environmental Affairs funded South African National Biodiversity Institute’s Invasive Species Programme (SANBI’s ISP).

Projects: Only projects relevant to one of SANBI’s ISP focus areas (detection, post-border risk assessment, and eradication planning) will be considered.  However, the topic can be any terrestrial, marine or freshwater taxa, or specific pathways or areas.  For more details see Wilson et al. 2013 South African Journal of Science, available free at  If you are unsure whether a project qualifies please contact us before submitting an application.

Who is eligible to apply?

Candidates must be pro-active, enthusiastic, and interested in doing excellent research that can make a difference. Student bursaries are only available to South African citizens and will be awarded in line with national equity targets. Post-doctoral research bursaries are open to anyone who has completed their PhD in the last five years. Honours students need to apply to a university honours programme themselves and the bursary is conditional upon them securing their position in such a programme.


(Bursary value to cover living expenses and university fees)

  • Honours/4th year undergraduate: R 60,000 p.a. for 1 year
  • Masters: R 105,000 p.a. for 2 years*
  • Doctoral: R 135,000 p.a. for 3 years*
  • Post-doctoral: R 240,000 p.a. for 2 years

*An application for a Masters or a Doctoral bursary can be considered for a one-year project development internship should the applicant be unlikely to finish their studies within the prescribed period of time. In such cases, a candidate may be offered an internship interview as per SANBI’s internship programme protocol. A project development intern is expected to reapply for a bursary the following year.

Project running expenses will be covered separately to the bursaries and will vary depending on the project. Unsuccessful or ineligible applicants may be considered for support with project running costs if their projects are closely aligned to SANBI ISP’s focus areas.


Each application is to be accompanied by a standard bursary application cover sheet (downloadable below). Applications are to include a full CV; certified copies of ID and academic record; two letters of academic reference; an agreement from a prospective academic supervisor; for Hons. a one page statement of interest in invasion biology; and for MSc, PhD and post-docs a two-page project outline. Send all documents to with “SANBI ISP bursaries” in the subject line.

Contact details:

For terrestrial and freshwater projects: Prof John Wilson (;

For marine projects: Dr Kerry Sink (;

SANBI Marine Programme

For questions about the application process: René du Toit (

Closing date: 31 October 2014 (successful candidates will be notified mid-November)

SANBI reserves the right not to fill these bursaries.

If no response has been received within 21 days of the closing date, candidates may assume that their applications were unsuccessful.

Please note that any emails sent to SANBI must be under 10MB in size.