Programme Description


The Young African Leaders Programme (YALP) of the EUI School of Transnational Governance (STG) provides a unique opportunity for aspiring leaders from Africa to further develop their policy work and professional skills amidst international experts and global leaders.

In the dynamic academic environment of the European University Institute (EUI) in Florence, selected participants will take part in seminars, trainings and skills development sessions, conferences, and study visits in Europe. Interaction with the other fellows, policymakers and the academic community at the EUI will make this a highly enriching experience.

The fellowship is a full-time and fully-funded programme.

Places in the three-month leadership programme are fully-funded with a grant of € 2,500 per month. African leaders must live in the area of Florence for the duration of their stay. The language of the programme is English. The programme targets mid-career, high potential emerging leaders, policymakers, diplomats, and professionals from Africa, working in national and local authorities, regional, continental, international organisations and development partners, civil society organisations, academia, media and the private sector, in Africa.

The fellowship is open to mid-career professionals and executives under the age of 35 at the start of the programme on 1 September 2023. Women and people with disabilities will exceptionally be considered up to the age of 40 on 1 September 2023.

Applicants need to be African nationals residing in Africa.

Special attention will be paid to ensuring access to the programme for young people with disabilities and dedicated measures will be foreseen during the fellowship as needed.

This programme is supported by DG International Partnerships of the European Commission.

Applications Deadline:

The application deadline for the 2023/2024 fellowship is 22 February 2023 (15:00 Italian time, CET)

Applications must be submitted through the online application form. There are no paper forms to complete or to mail – hard copy or email applications will not be accepted.

There are two distinct phases in the application process:

  1. Register your application
  2. Submit your application by 22 February 2023 (15:00 Italian time, CET)

Once you have registered your application, you may continue to work on the details and attachments until the deadline. Submit the application only when you have filled in all the information correctly and have successfully uploaded the final version of the attachments.

After submission, it will not be possible to update or modify your application.


Candidates should submit the following documents in the English language and in PDF:

  • A CV in PDF of maximum 3 pages.
  • A short biography in the application form: the bios serves in the selection process and will also be used for communications purposes if the applicant is accepted for the fellowship. Please write the bios in third person singular using maximum 1000 characters including spaces. Where possible, it should point out the work or studies the candidate has carried out on EU-Africa relations, which will be an asset in the selection process.
  • A statement of purpose, in PDF: in the statement of purpose, you explain who you are and why you deserve to be part of the Young African Leaders Programme and the EUI-STG. Use the statement to elaborate your views and perspectives on the link between your participation in the programme and the EU-Africa partnership and relations. It gives the admissions committee a chance to get to know you and understand how you could add value to the programme.The statement of purpose needs to be maximum four pages and include:
    • Introduction – a brief introduction of yourself and your background relating to your motivation to apply for the Young African Leaders Programme.
    • Body, stating your:

1) relevant experience and accomplishments related to your field of work

2) professional goals as they relate to the programme

3) reason of interest in the programme

4) your added value to the programme, also in relation to the Africa-EU partnership

    • Conclusion – summarising the statement including key pointers as to why the admission committee should select you.
  • A short summary (minimum 1000 characters in the dedicated box in the application form) of the statement of purpose mentioned above.
  • A copy of the highest educational certificate/ transcript and language in which this highest level of education was achieved.
  • Name and contact details of one referee, preferably a person who has worked with the applicant, whom the EUI may contact. Give preference to non-academic referees.

The expected level of English proficiency is level C1 of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).

An English certificate is not requested as part of the application, but successful candidates may be invited for an interview in English and requested to provide a certificate/supporting document on registration. This can be one of the international certificates listed below, or another supporting document showing that the candidate’s level of English is sufficient for using it as a working language (for example, a certificate of attendance of English language schools, a degree in English as a foreign language, a proof of work in an English-speaking environment). Native English speakers are exempt of proof.

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)*
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
  • Cambridge English Examinations (CAE)
  • Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC)
  • Business English Certificate (BEC)

*including special TOEFL Home Edition Test, for candidates who are unable to take the test at a test centre due to public health concerns.

Conditions of Award



The Young African Leaders Programme has a duration of 3 months: September to November 2023. During this period, the fellows are expected to commit to the programme full-time.


Fellows must reside in the area of Florence for the duration of the fellowship so that they can take an active part in the activities of the EUI-STG and the fellowship (with the possibility of short visits outside Florence and Italy as part of the programme). The fellowship cannot be carried out remotely/ online.


The basic grant is € 2,500 per month.

Successful applicants who receive other grants or salaries must disclose this to the EUI. The amount of the fellowship will be fixed at a lower rate (minimum €1,750 per month) depending on the amount of the additional income (upon production of relevant supporting documents).

If applicable, family allowances will be added to the basic grant (see below).

Family Allowances

A household allowance of up to € 300 per month is paid to a fellow with a partner if the partner lives with him/ her in Florence and on the condition that the partner’s income is less than € 2,000 per month. The sum of income and allowance cannot exceed € 2,000 per month (i.e. if the income is more than € 1,700, the allowance will be paid only to top up to € 2,000).

An allowance of € 200 per month is paid for each dependent child. Fellows are entitled to these allowances if they can declare that they are not receiving any similar allowance from another source, and upon submission of relevant supporting documents (i.e. marriage or partner certificate, or proof of cohabitation in Florence; birth certificates).

For dependent children in full-time education and over the age of 18, a school or university certificate is required. No allowance is paid for dependent children over the age of 26.


The fellowship is not taxed by the EUI. Fellows are, however, required to comply with any other tax provisions which may be applicable to them.

Medical Insurance

Fellows must have adequate medical insurance coverage during their stay at the Institute. They can either provide proof of their own insurance scheme, or subscribe to the EUI’s private sickness and health insurance scheme at their own expense. See the Cigna Insurance Scheme for conditions.

Travel Expenses

Fellows (but not their families) receive a contribution towards their travel expenses for the incoming trip from their place of origin to Florence, and for the outgoing trip to their destination at the end of their fellowship. Fellows are responsible for organising their own travel. The subsequent travel reimbursement from Africa to Florence amounts up to €1,200, including both incoming and outgoing trips. Taxi expenses are not reimbursed. Eligible expenses are:

  • First-class rail (travel by car is also reimbursed on this basis)
  • Economy class air fare

Removal/ Re-installment expenses

There is no provision for removal or installation expenses.


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