In their own words: IDRC awardees share their experiences

IDRC has a proud history of nurturing emerging researchers in Canada and in low and middle income countries to create a critical mass of trained and experienced scientists who will apply their research in innovative ways to solve development problems.

Our awards and fellowships help build the capacity and careers of individuals by funding academic study and mobility, research, the development of complementary skills, and hands-on experience.

Each year, IDRC offers graduate students the opportunity to fund their innovative work that will address development challenges through the:

  • IDRC Research Awards: a dozen young scholars and/or practitioners spend a year at IDRC carrying out field research while gaining experience in program management;
  • IDRC Doctoral Research Awards: every year, 20 scholars receive up to CA$20,000 to support their field research; and
  • Awards and fellowships funded by individual donors: some 4-6 scholars receive support through the Bentley Research Fellowship, Bene Research Fellowship, Hopper-Bhatia Canada fellowships and awards, and the Rachel DesRosiers Award each year.

Other IDRC-supported awards and fellowships:

  • Queen Elizabeth Advanced Scholars: the program is managed by Universities Canada and will support up to 450 scholars over a five-year period.
  • Early Career Women Scientist Fellowships: a new program expected to start in early 2018 that will support 60 women scientists over a five-year period. The program will be managed by the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World.
  • Professional Development Awards: allow individuals with career experience to further develop their expertise and professional capacity by working with IDRC staff on program and research issues.

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Meet some of our IDRC Research Awardees (2014-2017)

Read about the impact the award has had on their research and experience.


Gloria Song
Gloria Song
Research Awards, 2016

It’s unusual to hear a lawyer say that “the law itself is not enough.” But that’s the conclusion 2016 Research Award recipient Gloria Song came to in her research.
Juan Carlos Rivillas
Juan Carlos Rivillas
Research Awards, 2016

“Health problems are about more than money,” says 2016 IDRC Research Award recipient Juan Carlos Rivillas.
Erika Malich
Erika Malich
Research Awards, 2016

“Research should be a public good,” says 2016 IDRC Research Award recipient Erika Malich.
Employer in Kenya
Rachel Kalbfleisch
Research Awards, 2016

Youth make up a third of Kenya’s population. Up to 35% of them are unemployed or work in informal micro-enterprises.
Mary Nana Anima Akrofi in Parkso, Ghana
Mary Nana Anima Akrofi
Research Awards, 2016

Youth fare better financially than adults in the processing of cassava in Ghana.
Andréanne Martel at Gender Summit in Brussels November 2016
Andréanne Martel
Research Awards, 2016

For Andréanne Martel, research and the work she carried out at IDRC as a 2016 Research Award recipient are inseparable.
Catherine Gucciardi Garcez
Catherine Gucciardi Garcez
Research Awards, 2016
Brazil, Canada

Technical solutions aren’t sufficient to guarantee the success of small-scale renewable energy projects in Brazil.
Health clinic in Nepal
Sunisha Neupane
Research Awards, 2015

Neupane’s eye-opening experience started with a 22-hour bus ride and 4.5-hour walk to Bohoragaun in western Nepal.
Rong Li presenting
Rong Li
Research Awards, 2015

The expansion of China’s economy has prompted the country’s emergence as a major player in the field of foreign aid, including in health.
Street in India
Nirojan Kulendrarajah
Research Awards, 2015

Philanthropy is on the rise in India and is predicted to keep on growing.