AIG Scholarships In The UK | Africa Initiative For Governance

The AIG Scholarships were launched in 2017 to provide a unique opportunity for exceptional West Africans interested in a career in public service to pursue a Master of Public Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford. Since 2017, twenty-seven (27) scholarships worth over £50,000 each have been awarded to future public sector leaders who have demonstrated a passion for the public sector.

The Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG) Scholarship Program is targeted at graduates between the ages of 25 and 35, some of whom may have work experience. They will be exceptionally intelligent graduates who have excelled academically as well as in other areas of their lives.

Mission of AIG

Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG) overarching challenge is the need to transform the performance of Africa’s public sector.

An effective public sector is instrumental to the attainment of a country’s developmental goals, and across post-independent Africa, the public sector was seen as the means by which socio-economic development would be achieved. However, the results have been largely disappointing and many African countries have notoriously unproductive and underperforming public sectors characterized by inefficiency, excessive bureaucracy, and corruption.

Consequently, public confidence in the public sector is low, with few solutions being proffered to effect lasting change to the status quo. Africa Initiative for Governance is proposing an innovative solution that will inject talent and resources into the public sector and will stimulate a revolutionary transformation from within.

AIG Scholarship Details

Why choose AIG

The founders and principals are leading figures in business, government, and academic life. Together, they share a strong vision for the future of African governance and the potential of their continent and its people. Although their goals are ambitious, they believe that with the knowledge and expertise of their Board of Directors and their Advisors, they will ultimately achieve their objectives.

AIG Scholars spend the year at one of the world’s top universities, gaining knowledge and skills from the outstanding academic faculty and expert practitioners and interacting with other future public sector leaders from around the world. After completing their degrees, scholars return to their countries and use their learnings to bolster policymaking, support reforms, and contribute to their nation’s development.

About the Award

Every year, Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG) will fund five scholarships for outstanding individuals from Nigeria and Ghana to pursue the Master of Public Policy degree at the Blavatnik School of Government (BSG), University of Oxford. AIG Scholars will be expected, upon graduation, to return to their home country and apply their learning experience as change agents in their country’s public sector.

Value of Award: The AIG Scholarships are fully funded. Covering tuition fees, accommodation, and living expenses. It does not cover travel or visa expenses.

Number of Awards: 5

Duration of Program: 1 year

Offered Annually? Yes till 2022

Eligible Countries: Nigeria and Ghana

To Be Taken At (Country): Blavatnik School of Government (BSG), University of Oxford, UK

Field of Study: Master of Public Policy

Type: Master’s level

NB: From 2022, the AIG Scholarships will only be open to applicants already working in the civil service. Applicants should be aged between 25 and 50, with strong intellectual capacity, demonstrable leadership qualities, and a passion to contribute to the development of Nigeria’s civil service.

Eligibility Criteria 

To be eligible for consideration for the award of 2022-23 AIG Scholarships, you must;

– Be a Nigerian currently working in the public sector (Ministries, Departments, Agencies & Parastatals) at both Federal and State levels

– Aged between 25 and 50 years

– Have a minimum of seven (7) years (combined private & public sector) work experience

– Have a bachelor’s degree with a first-class or second-class upper undergraduate degree with honors (or equivalent international qualifications), as a minimum, in any discipline.

– Gain admission into the Blavatnik School of Government following success in the AIG shortlisting process

– Be preferably top 10% of graduating class (First, Second, or Master’s Degree) – evidence to be provided. (For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA sought is 3.7 out of 4.0.)

Criteria for selection

Academic distinction and leadership potential are essential priorities for selection. Applicants are required to have academic and analytical excellence, a strong commitment to public service, demonstrated leadership capabilities and resultant impact, and Impeccable moral character.

Additional Information 

Provide evidence of game-changing leadership and the resultant impact

Show skills and interests outside of academics (evidence to be provided)

Only applicants shortlisted for the next stage of the selection process will be contacted, and any inquiries regarding individual application status will not be responded to.

All applications must be submitted via the online application portal using the link below.

Applications sent via post or submitted in person will NOT be accepted.

Candidates who emerge as finalists in the Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG) selection process will be required to apply directly to the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, for admission. Finalists offered admission to the Master of Public Policy will be considered by the school for the AIG Scholarship.

How to apply

Applications for the scholarship award should be submitted via IDS online portal IDS Scholarship Application Form.

For more information

Visit the IDS Scholarship page


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