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Kader Asmal Fellowship

This fellowship was set up in 2012 in honour of the late Professor Kader Asmal, who taught law at Trinity College Dublin for 27 years, specialising in human rights, labour, and international law. He co-founded the Irish Anti-Apartheid Movement in 1963 and served as Chair until his return to South Africa in 1990. He was part of the ANC team that negotiated the transition to democracy. In 1994, he became Minister for Water Affairs and Forestry in the first ANC Government after the advent of democracy and served as Minister for Education from 1999 to 2004. He died in June 2011.

Under this fellowship programme, Irish Aid supports students from South Africa to undertake Masters level studies in Ireland in strategically-important disciplines including finance, business, engineering, sustainable technologies and public health and nutrition.

The scholarship award covers course fees, required flights, accommodation, monthly allowances, insurance and other incidental expenses. Eligible Masters programmes in Ireland commence in the period August to September each year and, depending on the course, scholarships will run for between 10 and 16 months.

All applicants who are selected to go forward to second stage will be required to sit an IELTS exam, unless they are already in possession of an IELTS certificate that is less than 12 months old at the time of application which shows the applicant has achieved the necessary score for the course they intend to apply to. Early preparation for the IELTS exam is strongly advised, even for native English speakers.

Eligible Countries: 
South Africa
Eligible Courses: 

Masters programmes in Ireland in: (i) business management, economics and finance; (ii) agriculture, food science, environment and rural development; (iii) gender and human rights (iv) engineering, sustainable technology and resource management; (v) information systems and communications technology; and (vi) tourism. A directory of eliglible courses is available for download at

Applications for 2019 entry are closed

Applications for 2020 entry will open in summer 2019.


To be eligible to apply for this scholarship you must:

  • be a national of, and resident in, South Africa.
  • have achieved the necessary standard to be accepted onto an eligible postgraduate course in an institute of higher education in Ireland.
  • be able to take up a fellowship in the academic year for which the application is made.
  • be able to demonstrate skills in academic English with an appropriate score on a recognised test (IELTS 6.5).
  • not have already applied for a course at an institution in Ireland - if you have already been admitted to a university you are not eligible.


Enquiries should be made to Irish Aid at the Embassy of Ireland in South Africa.