How to apply for JSMF Postdoctoral Fellowship Awards-2020

Are you currently enrolled in PhD? Are you interested in post-doctoral research? Here is an opportunity available at JSM Foundation, USA. James S. McDonnell Foundation, USA is inviting applications for the JSMF Postdoctoral Fellowship from eligible and interested candidates. Read this article to know the details of the fellowship.

About JSMF

The James S. McDonnell Foundation (JSMF) was established in 1950 by James Smith McDonnell, an aviation pioneer in the United States of America. The main aim behind the establishment of this was to "improve the quality of life," and to support new research for the creation of new knowledge. Fellowship is granted by the foundation through a peer-reviewed proposal process. After a multi-phase review process " letter of intent to fund" is issued to selected students. These "letter of intent to fund" can be used by students for negotiation with potential postdoctoral training.

About fellowship

The JSMF Fellowship is a unique fellowship that provides opportunities for students to complete post-doctoral training with the specified research goals. This fellowship gives opportunities that might not be otherwise approachable to the students. The JSMF post-doctoral fellowship also benefit students who are doing their doctoral research and want to attain new knowledge, skills and experience in a multi-disciplinary field like complexity science and want to make their career in this field.

Fellowship details

Designation: JSMF Postdoctoral Fellowship Awards
Research Area: Multi-disciplinary field
Location: James S. McDonnell Foundation, USA
Number of Fellowships: JSMF grants up to 10 fellowships every year.
Duration of Fellowship: The duration of the fellowship will be two years, which may be extended up to one more year.

Eligibility criteria

  1. The PhD students whose PhD is about to complete and looking for their first post-doctoral fellowship are eligible for this fellowship. The fellowship will be given an opportunity to the students to complete their research goals that will either be difficult or impossible without an external source of funding. Under this fellowship, a fellow can make significant changes in their research like the field of study, model organism, theory vs experimental, etc.
  2. Applicants and their supervisors are advised to read the fellowship guidelines and characteristics carefully before applying because in previous years more than 70% submissions were rejected in the first phase of review due to poor fit with the prescribed goals of the program.

Fellowship Benefits

Emoluments: A fellow will be provided with a fellowship for a total amount of USD200,000 during JSMF Fellowship.

Salary of post-doctoral fellow and other benefits will be paid in full from the fellowship. However, general support to a laboratory or department will not be borne by the fellowship. Separate funds for a stipend of Fellows will not be provided, but if the institutional salary scales for post-doctoral fellows are fixed and the funds are in excess then it can be used to support the research of post-doctoral fellow.

Application process

The application form must be submitted in 2 parts.
Part 1 is to be submitted by the applicant. It must contain the following items:
  • Applicant Contact Details.
  • Application Title
  • Summary of the Proposal (maximum 500 words):
    1. It must mention the aim of the applicant to expand his complex systems training.
    2. List of the top 2 contributions of student's PhD period including articles, code, software, etc.
  • A brief essay note of the student's PhD research (maximum 500 words)
  • Research interests are written in essay format for postdoctoral studies (maximum 2500 word): It must explain the following points.
    1. Student's interests, questions, and future plans require the flexibility of this fellowship.
    2. Current and future research directions derive from and will contribute to complex systems science.
    3. Specific details about what the student intends to learn during postdoctoral training.
    4. The student's plan after the fellowship?
    5. Latest CV of Student (2-page maximum) in PDF format.

The reasons for pursuing the post-doctoral fellowship must be mentioned as it qualitatively adds value to the student's skills, knowledge, and connection to scientific communities.

Part 2 is to be submitted by the PhD supervisor and other faculty members. It must be submitted separately as a single PDF file.

Applications completed in all respect containing both Part 1 & 2 must be uploaded to the website of JSMF through the specified process. After successful submission of application, a confirmation email will be sent to the applicant's email ID.

Announcement of results

After receiving of application JSMF Board of Directors will hold a meet for funding decisions. They will decide after considering the advisory board's recommendations.
Results of JSMF funding will be announced at the end of October.

What are the important dates?

  • Advertisement publication on the Website: March 6, 2020.
  • Beginning of Application Submission: Application submission starts from April 15, 2020.
  • Last Date for Apply: The deadline for submission of applications and letters of support is June 12, 2020, 15:59 CDT (20:59 UTC).
  • Review of Applications: June 13, 2020 to September 12, 2020.
  • Advisory Panel Meet to discuss the finalists: September 13-14, 2020.
  • Notification of decisions by email: September 25, 2020.
  • Consideration of the advisory panel's recommendations by JSMF Board of Directors: Late October.
  • Activation of Fellowship: All the selected students must activate the fellowship between June 2021 and February 28, 2022.

Note: Application received after the deadline will not be accepted.

Contact information

  • The James S. McDonnell Foundation
    1034 S. Brentwood Blvd., Ste 1850
    Saint Louis, MO 63117
    Phone: 314-721-1532
    Official Website:

Frequently Asked Questions

When will I receive the JSMF fellowship?
After selection for the fellowship, the applicants will be issued a “letter of intent to fund”. Only after selection and joining in a post-doctoral fellowship at a qualified institution, the Fellow will receive the grant.
What if I do not receive a notification of the decision in my mailbox?
If you do not receive a decision notification by September 25, 2020, please check your spam/junk mail folder. If no email communication is there, then contact
I have completed my PhD Can I apply for this fellowship scheme?
No. This fellowship is for the students who are in the final stage of completing their PhD and are looking for admission in post-doctoral studies. If you already have completed a PhD, you are not eligible for this fellowship.
Will the scheme cover the general support to a laboratory or department?
No. The fellowship is intended to provide the opportunity for continued education and training of the postdoctoral fellow. If fund remains balance with the institute of what is needed for stipend and benefits, the surplus funds can be used by the institution to support the research of fellow.


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