SANBI Bursary 2023

Great news for postgraduate students looking to get into their conservation studies!

The South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) is providing the opportunity for anyone interested to apply for their bursary program.

The organization aims to enrich South Africa’s youth by providing as much education as possible to change the dynamic of the country through educated youth that can contribute more to the country.

Any student with a passion for conservation is encouraged to apply and grow a successful career in this field.

Below is a fully detailed guide on exactly what this Bursary is, how it works, and what it needs from applicants.

Closing Date

This bursary will close on 22 March 2023. Please make sure to submit your application along with the requested support documents before this date.

If you don’t, you will not be considered for selection and the bursary provider will reject your application.

What Is This Bursary Program?

The South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) was formed in 2004 under the South African Department of Environment, Forestry, and Fisheries in compliance with the National Environmental Management Biodiversity Act.

The primary goal of SANBI is to perform biodiversity research and data collection, as well as to contribute to the country’s biodiversity resource management.

SANBI is also in charge of ecosystem rehabilitation and restoration.

This assures that the country’s National Botanical and Zoological gardens contribute to the country’s biodiversity for educational and recreational purposes.

SANBI invites students to enroll for their bursary program, which will run from April 2023 to April 2025.

The bursary will be awarded to postgraduate students who are enthusiastic about their studies and have strong conservation interests to undertake a research project to generate information required for the Scientific Authority to make non-detriment findings for one of these CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora)-listed plant species:

  • Aloe peglerae
  • Euphorbia flanaganii
  • Euphorbia groenewaldii
  • Euphorbia obesa
  • Euphorbia stellata
  • Stangeria eriopus

Who Can Apply

Applications are open to postgraduate students who are involved in MSc Studies.

What Does This Bursary Cover?

The bursary would cover academic costs and living expenses up to R150 000 each year for a total of two years.

The bursary applicant must find an acceptable supervisor at a South African institution and register with the university by March 31, 2023.

SANBI will offer a co-supervisor and will pay the project’s operating expenditures.

Candidates who are shortlisted/successful will be informed within 30 days after the closing date; if you do not get feedback by this deadline, please consider your application failed.

SANBI maintains the right to reject this bursary application.

How To Apply

Applications are fairly simple. All you need to do is download and complete the following application form, which you can find here.

Before applying, applicants must meet the following minimum entrance criteria (please note that failure to meet all requirements may result in your application being rejected):

  • You must be a South African citizen or a foreign national.
  • To pursue a research project on one of the plant species listed above, you must intend to study towards an MSc qualification.
  • You must be registered or intend to register at a recognized South African university before March 31, 2023.

Provide clear copies of the following supporting material with your online application form (submission of these papers is mandatory; if any are missing, your application may be disqualified):

  • ID document (certified copy)
  • Passport is not a South African resident (certified copy)
  • Letter of interest (including why you should be awarded the bursary)
  • Full Curriculum Vitae
  • 2 letters of reference (one must be from an academic supervisor) 
  • Academic records (certified copies)
  • Highest qualification (certified translation if required) (certified copy)

Applications must be submitted via email to: AND 

(Insert the words “Scientific Authority MSc bursary (priority plant project)” in the email subject line).

Contact Information

If you have any questions or concerns relating to the Africa Cosmos Education Trust Bursary, then you can contact the organization directly through the following means:

For any queries related to this bursary program, please contact the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) directly:

Contact person: Tasneem Variawa

Tel: 012 843 5188


Good luck with your application!