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Federal Department of Economic Affairs,

Education and Research EAER

Federal Commission for Scholarships
for Foreign Students FCS

Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships for Foreign Researchers

Since 1961 the Swiss Government, through the Federal Commission for Scholarships (FCS; abbr.: ESKAS in German, CFBE in French), offers scholarships
to young talented researchers in order for them to conduct research under the supervision of a Professor at one of the Swiss Academic Institutions.

The FCS is an extra-parliamentary Commission composed of representatives of all the Swiss universities and Federal Institutes of Technology. It is in charge
of the final selection of the scholarships as well the general offer of scholarships.

These scholarships are offered to postgraduate researchers wishing to undertake a doctoral or postdoctoral research (see p. 2). The main objective is to
foster academic mobility while enabling the best young researchers from all over the world to interact with their Swiss counterparts.

These scholarships cover the living expenses of the grantee during his/her stay in Switzerland. The Scholarship does not cover research expenses nor does it
cover the living expenses of his/her spouse and children. Universities can complement the scholarship with additional funds.

How to apply?
The application as well as the first screening process is conducted by the Swiss Embassies or a national agency in each country.

Candidates can find all the relevant information on the FCS website:

The Supervisor and his role

In order to apply, candidates must have a supervisor at one of the Swiss university or Federal Institute of Technology. The Professor must agree to supervise
the candidate during the whole research stay. The supervisor will be the academic advisor and the reference person for the whole duration of the scholarship.

The candidate and the supervisor define together the research proposal taking into account the interests of both parties. The supervisor will integrate the
grantee in his/her team and provide good working and research conditions. In addition, the supervisor will provide adequate office or lab space and access to
the necessary infrastructure for the research.

The supervisor will inform the FCS university representative at an early stage about any significant problems that may arise with the grantee.

FCS Represenative for USI Università della Svizzera italiana Service d’accueil at USI
Prof. Dr. Michael Gibbert: T 058 666 47 27 Arianna Imberti Dosi: T 058 666 46 26
Swiss Government Excellence Scholarship for Foreign Researchers - Overview of scholarships available
Status of scientific Research scholarship independent of Research scholarship (Sandwich) PhD Scholarship Post-doctoral Scholarship
fellowship matriculation at any other institution
Post-graduate researchers possessing a MSc PhD students enrolled in a PhD Persons possessing required Persons possessing a PhD degree
Target groups degree program at a university in their home degree (MSc) to carry out a PhD
or third country program at the chosen Swiss
university. Admission regulations of
the hosting Swiss institution are
Scientific training and exchange The proposed research project Project proposal (5-10 pages) and Project proposal and plan (10-15
Key points Appointment with an appropriate advisor at the complements the PhD project in the working plan for 3 years; detailed pages), including justification of the
Swiss university and his/her invitation required. home or third country. approval and invitation by the PhD choice of the Swiss institution or
Appointment with an appropriate advisor at the Swiss institution. laboratory; detailed approval and
advisor at the chosen Swiss invitation of the hosting advisor.
university and his/her invitation Career plan for the time after the
required. post-doctoral fellowship.

Duration of 12 months 36 months 12 months

12 months

NO – but change to PhD project status possible

Extension if the PhD proposal has been accepted by the NO NO YES 6 months depending on the
host university in Switzerland budget.

Scholarship amount 1’920.00 1’920.00 1’920.00 3'500.00


Possibility of financial YES but not higher than the monthly YES but not higher than the monthly YES but not higher than the YES but not higher than the monthly
complementation by indemnification of a regular doctoral assistant at indemnification of a regular doctoral monthly indemnification of a regular indemnification of a regular post-
the hosting institution the hosting institution. The increased wage must assistant at the hosting institution. doctoral assistant at the hosting doctoral fellow at the hosting
be justified by additional working duties of the The increased wage must be institution. The increased wage institution. The increased wage
research fellow. justified by additional working duties must be justified by additional must be justified by additional
of the research fellow. working duties of the research working duties of the research fellow
fellow. in the hosting institution.

Age limit Max 35 years Max 35 years Max 35 years Max 5 years after completion of PhD

YES to PhD project (depends on admission to NO NO but continuation depends on NO

Change of status PhD program of university, and successful successful doctoral project proposal
doctoral project proposal defense) defence at the Swiss institution
after 9 months from start.

Further information: Contact ESKAS/ CFBE:

April 2014