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Research and Training opportunities of The World Vegetable Centre

Research partnerships and training for professional development are important parts of the Center’s work. We provide research opportunities for scientists mainly in headquarters and training opportunities for extension workers and farmers mainly through our regional offices in Tanzania, Thailand and India.

Experienced senior scientists

New and trainee scientists


Experienced senior scientists

The World Vegetable Center (AVRDC) welcomes the opportunity to develop partnerships with experienced scientists to strengthen our collaboration with other research and development institutions around the world. Financial support may be provided by the scientist or their employer directly, or from a donor’s project funds usually administered by a Center scientist.

Sabbatical Scientists are usually experienced researchers from developed countries who collaborate with an AVRDC scientist on a specific project. Funding is usually provided by the sabbatical scientist, their employer or a fund-granting organization, but the Center may also provide partial funding. Terms are for usually for six months to one year.

Visiting Scientists are generally senior research scientists and university professors from developing countries with extensive expertise and experience in vegetable research and a minimum of two years experience since earning a Ph.D. Their work should help to strengthen collaboration between the Center and a national agricultural research system partner. Financial support is usually personally arranged and terms are usually for six months to one year.

Postdoctoral Fellows are Ph.D. holders who are actively pursuing R&D on vegetables. Financial support is usually through a donor’s project funds and terms are for one to three years.

A scientist seeking a short-term research appointment should forward a copy of their curriculum vitae, a brief description of current research work, and a two- to three-page summary of past research work to the Director General of AVRDC. A new Ph.D. graduate should submit a copy of his or her thesis abstract. A brief research proposal that describes the proposed study and its expected output must be enclosed. Priorities are given to self-funded applicants with strong employer endorsement.

New and trainee scientists

AVRDC provides opportunities for new scientists such as Master’s or PhD students and trainee scientists such as undergraduates to either complete their theses or gain experience by participating in one of the Center’s ongoing research programs.  Most come for 3 to 6 months and their expenses are paid by their employers, donors or themselves. While doing their research work they obtain practical skills to develop their scientific careers. These have included screening varieties for diseases, using molecular tools in breeding, developing natural pest control methods, or analyzing nutritional properties of vegetables.

The Center does not grant degrees, but collaborates with universities in many countries to make its facilities and expertise available to scholars interested in tropical vegetable research.

Fellows: Research fellowships are full-time apprenticeship programs for employees of national agricultural research systems. Applicants must have a Master’s or Bachelor’s degree as well as several years of experience. Research is conducted under the supervision of a Center scientist. Fellowships are usually for one year with a possible extension for another year. Preference is given to self-funded candidates from developing countries, or those who can be funded through existing Center projects.

Graduate students: Those seeking to do their thesis work at the Center must be proficient in English, be  enrolled at a university, and have completed their coursework. A candidate must be endorsed by their employer and/or university adviser. The AVRDC scientist who agrees to guide the student’s research must be accepted by the university as a member of the student’s thesis advisory committee. Provided funds are available and all parties agree, the thesis research can be conducted at the Center’s headquarters or regional centers.

Interns: Full-time researchers who have a university diploma plus several years of experience. They conduct research under the supervision of a Center scientist on topics of mutual interest to the Center, the trainee, and the trainees’ employer.

Undergraduates: Students can work at the Center during their summer break on a topic within a supervising scientist’s research project that may contribute towards a thesis. Funds permitting, the student will receive a nominal stipend, but all expenses, including meals, accommodation, and travel to and from the Center are borne by the student.

Please fill out and submit the appropriate application form. The Center’s Training Coordinator will endeavor to match your interests with the appropriate Center scientist to negotiate a suitable training program.


Fees vary depending on the location, and the amount of the Center’s staff time needed. Fees apply to trainee researchers including graduate students, research fellows, research interns and undergraduates. For details, contact the Training Coordinator, Lydia Wu <lydia.wu(at)>

If you do not have access to other sources of funding, these institutions may be able to offer assistance:

The Food Security Center (FSC) at the University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany awards up to 29 scholarships for PhD students and postdoctoral researchers (mainly from developing countries) for a period of 4 to 36 months.  

The Taiwan government provides a number of scholarship programs for international students to study in Taiwanese universities.  Joint supervision of students with AVRDC scientists has been done forscholarships such as those for the Tropical Agriculture Master’s and PhD Program at National Pingtung University of Science and Technology.

Research and Training Opportunities Information