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Research Grant Call for PhD and Master of Science Students at Maseno University Kenya


fmUPSCALE is a five-year project being implemented in five Eastern African Countries (Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda & Ethiopia), by a consortium of 18 European and African Partners through funding from the EU, Horizon 2020 Project. The project aims at scaling up understanding, adoption, application and intensification of Push-Pull Technology in agriculture from individual fields to farms, landscape and regional scales; and from cereal to other crops and cultivation systems. It is implemented through 10 Work Packages (WPs), of which Maseno University (MU), Kenya leads WP1: Multi-actor transdisciplinary coordination through 4 tasks and Task WP 7.2 while MU is a partner in WP 6.3 explained as follows:

Task Title
Task 1.1 Coordinating with projects and networks in Africa and the EU to develop and implement transdisciplinary, Multi-actor Communities of practice on sustainable intensification.
Task 1.2 Organize multi-actor transdisciplinary workshops and meetings.
Task 1.3 Develop a multi-actor transdisciplinary knowledge-building strategy among UPSCALE partners, research, extension providers, policy and various value chain stakeholders.
Task 1.4 Synthesize multi-actor feedback and co-construction processes for transformative transdisciplinary research approaches.
Task 6.3 Co-develop innovation in existing push-pull through multi-actor exchange
Task 7.2 Increasing value chain integration through transdisciplinary multi-actor involvement in knowledge exchange, infrastructure and policy.

Research Grant Call
The project aims to provide research grants for two (2) PhD students and five (5) MSc students to undertake studies in the following areas within the study region:

PhD Students
1. Multi-actor community (MAC) of practice networks as a framework for sustainable agricultural intensification (1 PhD student) (WP1).
2. Physiological functions, growth and grain yield of high value vegetable crops in push pull system (1 PhD student) (WP6).

Masters Students
1. Multi-actor community (MAC) of practice’s role in sustainable implementation of UPSCALE project (1 MSc student) (WP1).
2. Value chain analysis of push pull seed systems in East African Region (1 MSc students) (WP7.2).
3. Increasing push pull value chain integration through transdisciplinary multi-actor involvement in knowledge exchange (1 MSc student) (WP7.2).
4. Socio-economic evaluation of integration of high value crops within the push pull system (1 MSc student WP6).
5. Soil moisture and nutrient dynamics in an integrated push pull and high value vegetable cropping system (1 MSc student WP6).

Research Grant Costs

This research grant covers modest stipend and research costs for 12 person-months (MSc) and 24 person-months (PhD) during data collection, analysis and reporting. Qualified grantees will be required to develop proposals within the specified research tasks in line with the Research Grant Call.

Interested candidates should meet the following criteria:
1. Be a bonafide student of a public university within the study regions having registered not earlier than 2018.
2. Have successfully completed course work, where applicable.
3. Have no other commitments/engagements and is willing to undertake the research within the duration of the project period.
4. Have an interest in sustainable agricultural intensification through integration of multi-actor communities of practice.

Application process
Interested candidates are required to:
1. Submit an application clearly marked as “PhD Student” or “MSc Student” to the undersigned.
2. Attach a motivation letter (500 words) on why you are suitable for the project, areas of interest and what you will bring on board to ensure project success.
3. Attach a one (1) page concept note on any of the research grant call areas.
4. Attach transcripts, where applicable.
5. Attach a two (2) page (max.) CV.
6. The deadline for application is 30th April 2022.