Bodleian Libraries Afghan Scholars Programme

The Bodleian Libraries are pleased to announce an Afghan Scholars Programme. Those eligible will likely be academics in any field or professionals in the fields of education, heritage and culture. A doctoral degree is not required. The applicant must propose a project of research which can benefit from use of the collections of the Bodleian Libraries. These collections are extensive and include both digital and physical materials.

Any of the awards under this programme can be flexibly arranged, with a preference to be based in Oxford, but remote working is also possible. The duration of financial support from the programme is for a maximum of 12 months.

The call for applications closes on 2 December 2021, and applications for this phase of the programme must be received by that date. Further calls for proposals will be announced when available.

Further particulars


The programme will accept applications under two different strands. Proposals of research will be accepted that fit within either one of the strands described here:

Strand 1: Projects of research on any subject, preferably with a connection to academic programmes in the University of Oxford, for example the Invisible East project.

Strand 2: Projects of research on aspects of the literature, history and culture of Central Asia and the Persianate world. For a description of the collections in this specific area, please see the Middle Eastern manuscripts and rare books webpages. Basic records for a large part of the Bodleian's Islamic manuscript collections may be found on the Fihrist website.


  • Applicants must be citizens of Afghanistan and normally should have been resident in Afghanistan until a maximum of 8 months ago, or have refugee status, or have only a temporary visa.
  • A PhD is not required. Applicants must show either educational qualifications of MA or above, or professional experience relating to the subject area of the proposed research.
  • Remote working is possible.
  • The programme cannot assist with visa or travel arrangements.
  • The duration is for a maximum of 12 months.
  • The level of funding will be confirmed with successful applicants.

How to apply

Applications should be submitted by email to and must include:

  • the application form for the Afghan Scholars Programme (Word or PDF), or the relevant information requested in that form contained in an email to
  • a project description, not to exceed 1,200 words. This must include a description of the proposed research indicating how it qualifies under at least one of the strands described; a plan for carrying out the research either in Oxford or remotely; and explanation of the significance of the proposed research within the applicant’s field of knowledge.
  • curriculum vitae of no more than three pages.
  • two letters of recommendation: these must be tailored to your individual application. Letters may be sent directly from the referees to the Bodleian Libraries at, with the applicant’s name in the subject line.