Type of Funding





The Mo Ibrahim Foundation invites applications from young African professionals for the 2020 Ibrahim Leadership Fellowships, which is a leadership development programme designed to mentor future African leaders. There are 3 paid Fellowships available in 2020:

  1. At the headquarters of the African Development Bank (AfDB) in Abidjan, Côte D’Ivoire.
  2. At the International Trade Centre (ITC) in Geneva, Switzerland, where fellows will be stationed for 1 year commencing May 2020; and
  3. At the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The 1-year Fellowships aim to enable young African professionals to develop leadership capacity in a large institution and have better understanding of Africa’s socio-economic challenges.

The Mo Ibrahim Foundation works to:

  • Stimulate debate on good governance;
  • Provide criteria by which citizens and governments can measure progress;
  • Recognize achievement in African leadership and provide a practical way in which leaders can build positive legacies on the continent when they have left office; and
  • Support aspiring leaders for the African continent.


Fellows will be paid an annual stipend of US$100,000.


Applicants must be nationals of African countries, with at least 7 years of relevant work experience, who are under the age of 40, or for women with children, under the age of 45. They need to be holders of a Masters degree in a relevant discipline.

AfDB: Applicants must be citizens of AfDB member countries, holding a minimum of a Masters degree in economics, engineering, social sciences, international development, business administration, finance, banking or any discipline relevant to the Bank’s business. The priority for the 2020 selection of the Mo Ibrahim Fellow is the Bank’s High 5 areas (lighting up and powering Africa; Feeding Africa; Industrializing Africa; Integrating Africa and Improving the quality of life for the people of Africa). Key competencies required of applicants are top notch professional experience in private sector and strong policy analytical skills at all levels and ability to run models.

ITC: Applicants must have a Masters degree in economics, business, international development, international relations or related area. They should have knowledge of international trade development and trade related development assistance (TRTA); and are conversant with strategic planning and governance. They should have strong research and writing skills, the ability to analyze and interpret complex concepts and data and can communicate and interact with individuals at all levels and different multicultural backgrounds.

UNECA: Applicants must be nationals of Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) states, residing anywhere in the world. They must hold a Masters Degree in economics, social sciences, international development, business administration, law, finance, engineering, or any discipline relevant to the work of UNECA. Key competencies required include professionalism, teamwork, client orientation, planning and organizing and leadership potential. They need to have knowledge of negotiating and change management, as well as experience in formulating policy, and developing and implementing new strategies and procedures. Experience with working on African issues is an advantage.

For other specific eligibility requirements, please refer to the Official Website for each of the 3 Ibrahim Leadership Fellowships.


Applications are to be done online by 14 October 2019.

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