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PolyU PhD Scholars International Collaborative Research Fellowship (ICRF)

Forms and Notes for Successful Applicants

Call for applications - PolyU PhD Scholars ICRF 2023/24 Round 1 - NOW CLOSED! 


PolyU PhD Scholars is a prestigious fellowship that offers a competitive grant to support outstanding PhD students to conduct international collaborative research at top-notch global universities for at least six months. It aims to enable PhD students to travel abroad and collaborate closely with world-class scholars to tackle pressing problems and train themselves to become future leaders. Successful applicant will be designated as a PolyU PhD Scholar during their research visit. 


Period of research visit

  • The research visit must last at least six months and cannot exceed one year.
  • The period of the research visit will be counted within the normal study period of the student. The completion date of the visit must not exceed the normal study period.


  • Current PhD students with outstanding academic and/or research performance are eligible to apply for the fellowship.
  • Students can only receive the fellowship once within the normal study period.
  • Students whose registration is not confirmed may be given a conditional offer to undertake the research visit. If they cannot have their registration confirmed before the latest commencement date of the visit, the conditional offer will lapse.
  • Awardees of the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme are reminded to obtain prior approval from the RGC regarding residence requirement as set out in the Terms and Conditions of the Scheme: “If an awardee stays outside Hong Kong for academic/research activity for an aggregate period exceeding 90 consecutive days, or an aggregate of 183 days, the stipend will be suspended immediately unless prior approval by the Research Grants Council (RGC) has been given upon provision of strong justification by the affiliated university”.

Financial support

  • fixed amount of HK$55,000 will be awarded to successful applicants.
  • Students can concurrently apply for the fellowship and the Research Student Attachment Programme (RSAP) to maximise financial support for the visit.
  • Students may have to pay the host university's tuition and other fees. It is recommended that students confirm with the host prior to submitting their application.
  • Successful applicants will continue to receive stipends and pay tuition fees as required by PolyU, if applicable.
  • Successful applicants must commence the research visit within nine months of the date of the GS offer letter. Failing that, the approved fellowship will be withdrawn.
  • In the event of any disputes, the University reserves the right to make the final decision.

Application procedures and timeline

  • Applicants should seek the consent of the proposed host supervisor prior to application. Applicants and the host supervisor should have common research interests for supervision purposes.
  • Applications with the endorsement from the Chief Supervisor and D/SRC, and the following supporting documents should be submitted to the Graduate School (GS) by email (
    • An up-to-date CV, highlighting evidence of outstanding academic and/or research achievements;
    • A well-written research plan;
    • An invitation letter specifying the research visit period; and
    • A brief CV of the host supervisor.
  • Timeline:
    Date Event
    31 Oct 2023 Call for applications
    22 Nov 2023 Application deadline
    (with PolyU Supervisor and D/SRC endorsement)
    13 Dec 2023
    GS application selection
    Late Dec 2023 GS notification of results



All applications undergo a rigorous panel selection process and are assessed based on the following criteria:

  • The international standing of the host university;
  • The academic and/or research achievements of the applicant;
  • The quality of the research plan; and
  • The significance of the research collaboration.


  • The grant should be disbursed after the completion of the research visit, upon submission of a post-event report and boarding passes.
  • In the event that the research visit is cancelled or the actual duration falls short of the minimum requirement of six months, the fellowship may be revoked.



For enquiries, please contact the Graduate School by email at



There is no predetermined quota for the ICRF. The ICRF is a prestigious fellowship be awarded to a limited number of students, recognizing their outstanding achievements and commitment to high-quality collaborative research.

The selection is based on the merits of the applications and funding availability. 

There is no specific list of eligible host universities. This fellowship is aimed at top-notch global universities which are widely recognised for research accomplishments and international reputation. 

Interested students can concurrently apply for the ICRF and RSAP to maximise financial support for a research visit. If both applications are approved, students may be eligible for a fellowship of $55,000 from the ICRF and an allowance of up to $55,000 from the RSAP. This combined support can amount to a maximum of $110,000 for the duration of the visit. The respective regulations of ICRF and RSAP must be followed.

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