Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Doctoral Scholarships


The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Doctoral Scholarships are among the most distinguished awards available to scholars in the humanities and social sciences in Canada. Named after the former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau, the scholarships aim to foster intellectual freedom and encourage a deep engagement with public policy issues that are crucial to Canada and the world today. This scholarship not only honors a legacy of intellectual rigor and public service epitomized by Trudeau but also actively supports the next generation of scholars in making impactful contributions to their societies.


Who Can Apply?

Eligibility for the Trudeau Foundation scholarships is reserved for PhD candidates in the social sciences and humanities who are either already enrolled or intend to enroll at a Canadian institution. Applicants must demonstrate academic excellence, leadership potential, and a commitment to their research field’s relevance to Canadian and global public policy.

Necessary Documents

Application for the Trudeau scholarship requires a detailed proposal of the research project, complete academic transcripts, professional resumes, and recommendation letters from academic mentors.

Application Process

How to Apply

The application process is rigorous and detailed, reflecting the scholarship’s prestige. Candidates must first register their interest on the Foundation’s official website, where they will be guided through a series of steps including the submission of academic and personal documentation, and detailed research proposals.


Important Dates

Applications open in September 2024 and close by January 2025. Selections are finalized, and announcements are made by April 2025.

Scholarship Benefits

What Does the Scholarship Cover?

Each scholarship is valued at up to C$60,000 annually for up to three years. This financial assistance covers tuition fees, living expenses, and travel allowances related to research activities, including conferences and field research.

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Additional Benefits

Beyond financial support, the Foundation offers leadership training and opportunities to engage in high-level conferences and seminars with policymakers, industry leaders, and fellow scholars.

Fields of Study

Supported fields include but are not limited to political science, sociology, psychology, law, and economics. The Foundation encourages research that addresses pressing societal challenges and has the potential to influence public policies.

Selection Criteria

Recipients are selected based on academic merit, leadership qualities exhibited in their past endeavors, and the potential impact of their research on public policy and society.

Tuition Fees and Financial Information

Doctoral tuition fees in Canada vary widely but can average from C$8,000 to C$20,000 per year depending on the institution and the scholar’s residency status. The Trudeau Scholarship’s comprehensive coverage ensures that financial barriers do not hinder academic progress.

Available Scholarships

In addition to the Trudeau Foundation scholarships, candidates may also be eligible for other governmental and institutional scholarships, which can be cumulatively applied or held in conjunction with the Trudeau awards, provided full disclosure is made during the application.

Application Fee

Most Canadian universities charge an application fee ranging from C$100 to C$250 for doctoral programs, which is generally non-refundable and is required at the time of application submission.

Admissions Requirements

Admission into doctoral programs in Canada typically requires a master’s degree in a related field, with demonstrated research competencies and a minimum GPA of 3.0 or equivalent.

Acceptance Rate

The Trudeau Foundation scholarships are highly competitive with an acceptance rate of around 5-10%, reflecting the rigorous selection process that ensures only the most deserving candidates are chosen.

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The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Doctoral Scholarships offer a pathway for ambitious scholars in the humanities and social sciences to contribute significantly to academic and public discourse. With substantial financial support, opportunities for professional development, and a connection to a network of influential figures, recipients are well-positioned to advance their careers and effect meaningful change.

FAQs on Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Doctoral Scholarships

1. Can international students apply for the Trudeau scholarships?

Yes, international students who are enrolled in Canadian institutions are eligible to apply for the Trudeau scholarships. They must meet the same eligibility criteria as Canadian students, which includes being admitted to or currently enrolled in a doctoral program in the social sciences or humanities at a Canadian university.

2. Are there specific research topics that the Foundation prefers?

While the Trudeau Foundation supports a broad range of research topics in the humanities and social sciences, there is a preference for projects that align with the Foundation’s goals of enhancing public policy, governance, and rights and freedoms. Research that demonstrates the potential for significant societal impact and contribution to public discourse in Canada and globally is particularly valued.

3. What is the duration of the scholarship?

The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Doctoral Scholarship is typically awarded for a duration of three years. This period is intended to cover the bulk of the recipient’s doctoral studies, providing substantial support to ensure focus on research and professional development without the distraction of financial constraints.

4. What does the leadership training involve?

The leadership training provided by the Trudeau Foundation includes a variety of programs and workshops designed to enhance the scholars’ leadership skills. These may include mentorship from distinguished academics and professionals, participation in seminars and conferences, networking opportunities with influential figures in academia, government, and the private sector, and training in areas such as public speaking, negotiation, and organizational leadership.

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5. How can one strengthen their application for the scholarship?

To strengthen an application for the Trudeau Scholarship, candidates should focus on developing a clear and impactful research proposal that articulates the relevance and potential impact of their work. Additionally, demonstrating a record of academic excellence and leadership in their previous studies or professional endeavors is crucial. Strong letters of recommendation from academic advisors and mentors who can attest to the candidate’s abilities and potential contributions to their field are also important. Lastly, aligning one’s research interests and professional goals with the values and objectives of the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation can further enhance the application.