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ODI Fellowship Scheme

Providing capacity, promoting careers. ODI's prestigious Fellowship Scheme gives postgraduate economists and statisticians the chance to work in developing country public sectors as local civil servants on two-year contracts.

Fellowship scheme header pic.jpg

The Scheme has two objectives:

  1. Provide developing country governments with high-calibre junior economists and statisticians where there are gaps in local capacity.
  2. Give postgraduate economists and statisticians practical work experience in a developing country.

Since 1963 we have sent more than 1,000 economists and statisticians on two-year postings to more than 40 countries across Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and the Pacific, with many going on to successful careers in government, multilateral institutions, academia and the private sector.

The Scheme is open to candidates of all nationalities provided they have a master’s degree or PhD in economics, statistics or a related discipline. Postings are determined primarily by the needs of partner governments rather than the preferences of candidates themselves.

Find out more about the scheme

Governments often face capacity problems and view the Scheme as an effective means of employing well-qualified and highly motivated economists.

Find out more

What former fellows say

Portrait of Lord Andrew Turnbull KCB

Lord Andrew Turnbull KCB

CVO former Head of the UK Civil Service and Cabinet Secretary

'My posting as an ODI Fellow to Zambia in 1968 provided three things: a professional challenge applying the economics I was taught to real life policies and implementation, often at a level of seniority way above a first job in the UK; a personal challenge of resourcefulness, arriving in a new place with no house, no car and no money, though often with the support of other Fellows who will be friends for life; a rich choice of career options – back to academia, public service in the UK, international institutions or development charities.’

Portrait of Professor Anne Mills CBE

Professor Anne Mills CBE

FRS, Deputy Director and Provost

'The ODI Fellowship is a pioneering example of capacity strengthening – for the individuals themselves, and for the government agencies they support. For me it was truly a seminal experience, which was fundamental to the development of my future career.'

Professor Martin Weale CBE

'The two years I spent at the National Statistics Office in Malawi from 1977-79 gave me an interest in economic statistics which has never died away. Nothing makes one more careful in the use of data than having collected them. Forty years later, the experience underpins my current work on improving economic statistics in the UK.'

Sir Suma Chakrabarti KCB

Chair of ODI Board

'Two of the best years of my professional and personal lives were as an ODI Fellow in Botswana in the early 1980s. I formed much of my thinking on development, governance and reform during this period and made lifelong friends.’

The team - [email protected]

Application information

We are unable to invite applications at the moment, please get in touch if you would like more information [email protected]

Find out more about the application process