David Suzuki Fellowships

The David Suzuki Fellowship program will empower emerging scholars to tackle complex environmental problems. It will reduce financial barriers, provide mentorship and foster leadership and creativity so fellows can conduct research and engage and inform the public and policy-makers.

AWARD 

A total of three fellowships are available, one in Montreal, one in Toronto and one in Vancouver. Each will be for one year (with the potential for renewal) and will consist of:

  • A $50,000 stipend, plus up to $5,000 for travel and other professional expenses
  • Mentorship from David Suzuki and David Suzuki Foundation senior staff
  • Access to office space at the Foundation offices

RESEARCH THEME FOR 2017-18

In the program’s inaugural year, three fellows from different disciplines will work together to find climate change solutions to accelerate Canada’s transition to a low-carbon future:

VANCOUVER

RENEWABLE ENERGY AND/OR CLIMATE CHANGE ECONOMICS

The Vancouver-based fellow will join the Foundation’s Science and Policy team and research innovative clean energy solutions and/or the economics of sustainable development. Candidates from all disciplines are encouraged to apply.

Apply here

TORONTO

INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE AND CLIMATE CHANGE

The Toronto-based fellow will join the Foundation’s Ontario and Northern Canada team and work to integrate traditional Indigenous knowledge into climate change solutions. Candidates from all disciplines are encouraged to apply. You must be an Indigenous person (First Nation, Inuit or Métis) to be eligible.

Apply here

MONTREAL

TRANSPORTATION, ENERGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

The Montreal-based fellow will join the Foundation’s Quebec and Atlantic Canada team and work on regional and/or national transportation, energy and climate change issues. Issues may include (but are not limited to) green transit planning and the development of sustainable cities. Candidates from all disciplines are encouraged to apply and must be bilingual (French and English).

Apply here

PROGRAM STRUCTURE

The program is designed so fellows can keep one foot in academia and the other in learning communication and public engagement strategies. The aim is for fellows to stay true to David Suzuki’s model of communicating rigorous science in a way that is easy to understand and act on.

  • Fifty per cent of each fellow’s time will be spent on completing a one-year research project. The fellow and Foundation mentor(s) will determine specifics based on the fellow’s research interests (as outlined in their application). The research could include: building on the fellow’s graduate research findings, publishing/co-publishing academic research and/or doing a distinct piece of research.
  • Fifty per cent of each fellow’s time will be spent as a member of the Foundation team. The fellow will learn government relations, communications and community engagement. They may produce policy briefs, op-eds, conduct media interviews, contribute to social media, etc.

*This breakdown is subject to change, pending research focus specifics and interests. 

TIMELINE

  • Applications open: November 2, 2016
  • Application deadline: February 1, 2017
  • Finalists interviews: late February/March 2017 *All interviews conducted in English
  • Winners notified: spring 2017
  • Fellowship awards dinner and orientation: May 2017 *Mandatory for all fellows
  • Fellowship begins: June 2017 *Some start date flexibility

ELIGIBILITY

  • Master’s degree, in final year of PhD or PhD graduate (from any discipline)
  • Have not received any other significant financial fellowships
  • Canadian citizen, permanent resident or have the appropriate work visa required to legally live and work in Canada for the fellowship period

*Montreal-based fellow must be bilingual (French and English). Application submitted in French; finalist interview in English.
*Toronto- based fellow must be an Indigenous person (First Nation, Inuit or Métis).

SELECTION CRITERIA

  • Embodies David Suzuki’s solutions-focused scientific curiosity, research excellence, ability to bring clarity to complex issues and dedication to motivating people to take action for the planet
  • Promise of emerging as an inspiring environmental leader
  • Graduate research dedicated to, connected to, or able to advance climate solutions

APPLICATION

  • CV (including list of publications, grants, experience, etc.)
  • Written statement of purpose — include description of academic and professional preparation, how your graduate research links to advancing climate solutions, your specific research project idea for the fellowship you are applying for. (maximum 1,000 words)
  • Video response to: Why are you are applying for this fellowship? What is your vision for the fellowship term? How do you hope to inspire change in the world — what is your piece of the puzzle? (maximum three to five minutes) The video can be shot from a mobile device or webcam. Please upload the video to YouTube and share the link in the application form.
    More information on how to upload video and privacy settings here.
  • Written responses to: What’s been your biggest achievement? What’s been your biggest obstacle? In your opinion, what should be done to advance the environmental movement? Where do you see yourself in five years? (250 words maximum for each question)
  • Institutional contact information including an institutional email address for at least two academic referees (“anonymous” domains such as @gmail.com, @yahoo.com, @hotmail.com, etc. will not be accepted). You may submit up to two additional referees from academic, professional or volunteer work. Be sure to inform all referees that you are applying for a David Suzuki Fellowship and that the David Suzuki Foundation will be contacting them by email.
  • Letter of program completion/registration. If you have completed your degree, please attach a digital copy of a letter of program completion or degree conferral from your graduate school. If you have not completed your degree, please attach an official copy of the letter confirming registration that includes your name, degree, department, program start date and expected date of completion.

SELECTION PROCESS

  • Screening by internal committee
  • Finalists chosen by selection panel
  • Top three to five finalists (for each fellowship) interviewed (in English)
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