Closing Rice Yield Gaps in Asia with Reduced Environmental Footprints (CORIGAP) PhD Scholarship

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The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) invites qualified students to apply for a Ph.D. Research Scholarship position to work on agricultural production systems and environmental sustainability in Sri Lanka.


The PhD research program will contribute to the objectives of “Closing Rice Yield Gaps in Asia with Reduced Environmental Footprints (CORIGAP)" project funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation which aims to improve food security and gender equity, and alleviate poverty through optimizing productivity and sustainability of irrigated rice production systems in China, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka. More information on the project can be seen

Research area

The research will focus on understanding the tradeo-ff of rice-based agricultural production systems on environmental footprints at a landscape scale in Sri Lanka with a special focus on water quality. It includes understanding spatial and temporal non-point source pollutions and its relation to agricultural practices. The work will also focus on water governance to reduce the environmental footprint. The scholar needs to spend significant time in Sri Lanka for research work and IRRI-HQ, Philippines for developing research outline, laboratory work, data analysis and writing of results.

I. Eligibility requirements

All applicants must:

  • be from Sri Lanka but can be enrolled in any university
  • have finished all Ph.D. coursework requirement or willing to do a Ph.D. by research only

II. Qualification:

A master degree in Hydrology, Water management, Geography, Water quality modelling or related agricultural field

Skills, Knowledge, and Attitude

  • possess adequate proficiency in English
  • be involved in the field of rice science and related systems research.
  • possess skills of using GIS, statistical tools/models for landscape data visualization and analysis.
  • understanding of irrigation system and water governance in Sri Lanka
  • be willing to work in the remote area of Sri Lanka and travel independently.

III. Scholarship benefits

The scholarship will cover university tuition fees (to a maximum of $700/year), monthly stipend ($1250/month), health insurance coverage, and research support costs for a period of three years.

IV. Application procedure

Interested applicants should submit an application online on or before the deadline together with the following:

  • Application letter
  • Updated curriculum vitae (CV)
  • Scanned official transcript of records (BS, MS), as applicable. If applicable, a copy of grades for Ph.D. or MS coursework should also be submitted.
  • Letters of assessment/recommendation letters from two experts working in the same research area.
  • Endorsement from the participating university where the student is currently enrolled.