Apply for 2024 Youth for Biosecurity Fellowship

Deadline Date: April 05, 2024

Donor Name: United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA)

Grant Size: Not Available

Organized by the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs in Geneva in partnership with key international actors empowering youth in science diplomacy and global biosecurity, the Youth for Biosecurity Fellowship provides a unique learning and networking experience into multilateral discussions taking place in the framework of the Biological Weapons Convention in Geneva.

The fellowship will provide the opportunity for 20 young scientists from the Global South to join an online interactive training programme prior to a field visit during the meeting of the BWC Working Group on the Strengthening of the Convention in Geneva.

The Fellowship aims at allowing young biosecurity leaders from the Global South to:

  • Learn & lead -> deepen your expertise in biosecurity and disarmament to build leadership skills
  • Think & act -> engage in discussions with senior experts and make your voice heard in the margins of multilateral disarmament meetings
  • Engage with community -> connect with young experts, join an international youth network and enjoy a space for dialogue between young scientists and BWC practitioners including diplomats and experts.

Programme Overview

  • The Fellowship runs over a 3-month period and requires a minimal time commitment to accommodate fellows’ work or academic schedules. Activities include:
    • An Online Biosecurity Diplomacy Workshop from 5 June to 5 July 2024 with approximately one session (two to three hours) per week
    • A collaborative project to prepare in July 2024 and to be presented at the BWC Working Group on the Stengthening of the Convention in August 2024
    • An online briefing on the Working Group on the Strengthening of the Convention in July/August 2024
    • A five-day field visit in Geneva from 19 to 23 August 2024 during the meetings of the BWC Working Group on the Strengthening of the Convention

Join the Youth for Biosecurity Fellowship if you

  • Are passionate about and have experience in biosafety, biosecurity, disarmament and non-proliferation or youth involvement and want to understand your key role against the misuse of biological agents
  • Are willing to learn more about the Biological Weapons Convention and its critical role for disarmament and health security
  • Believe that young people can be a force for positive change and want to play an active and forward-looking role in building a more peaceful and secure world
  • Want to get an insider view into how science diplomacy happens in multilateral disarmament meetings

Here is What You Will Benefit From

  • Fully funded visit to Geneva during the Meeting of the Working Group on the strengthening of the Convention
  • One month of pre-Working Group online workshop in the lead up to the field visit
  • Small group interactions with leading experts in disarmament and nonproliferation, biosecurity, biosafety, and health security
  • Opportunities to meet, collaborate and network with fellow young scientists, diplomats, experts, civil society organizations and other international youth-driven networks
  • Be part of a growing network of early-career professional in biosecurity

Your Commitment as a Youth for Biosecurity Fellow

  • Participate in all online sessions and in the field visit [the fellows are responsible for obtaining the relevant authorizations from their employer or universities].
  • Engage actively in all the Fellowship’s activities – the Fellowship is an interactive and participative experience and relies on the fellows’ active participation
  • Make time in your schedule to adequately prepare for all sessions and discussions – the course will be fairly intensive and prior preparation will be key to the fellows’ active participation.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible to apply, prospective fellows must:

  • Be under the age of 35
  • Be citizens of a low- or middle-income BWC State Party (Check if your country is in the list Development Assistance Committee List of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
  • Have an advanced degree in the life sciences or a related discipline from a recognized university or institution. [Candidates with backgrounds in other fields such as social sciences can be exceptionally considered if they have a demonstrated interest in biosecurity, health security and/or disarmament and non-proliferation]
  • Have a strong command of written and spoken English.
  • Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply. The selection process will be guided by the need to ensure the highest quality of participants while maintaining a gender and regional balance.

For more information, visit UNODA.

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