The Carl Schlettwein Foundation awards scholarships to Namibian students enrolled at a university in southern Africa, following submission of an application by relevant teaching staff. Recipients are provided a platform to showcase their work and network with others. Details on how to apply may be found under Contact / Scholarship applications.


Scholarships for Namibian students in southern Africa

Preserving history
One of Carl Schlettwein’s original goals was to promote Namibian self-knowledge by preserving history and people’s memories of the past. Thus, the Carl Schlettwein Foundation has traditionally provided support to historians as well as archivists and librarians. Over time, its supportive efforts have expanded to include, in particular, ethnology, anthropology, sociology, political science and pedagogy.

Multiplier effect of scholarships
The Carl Schlettwein Foundation has long sought to ensure that participants’ growing knowledge in turn benefits Namibian society and the wider region. It strives to ensure that the resources it invests achieve a multiplier effect, extending far beyond the personal career path of individual recipients to support the development of the entire nation.

A crucial part of such efforts is that of proactively addressing the issue of brain drain – the loss of skills, capacity and knowledge to other places and regions. Statistics clearly show that studying abroad significantly influences students’ future decisions about where to live, work and reside long term. The Carl Schlettwein Foundation strives to counter brain drain by explicitly supporting students in southern Africa and not awarding scholarships to students studying at universities outside the region.

Cooperation with institutions in southern Africa
The Carl Schlettwein Foundation is based in Basel, Switzerland, and is thus geographically far removed from southern Africa. Its geographic separation can complicate communication and student assessment. However, the presence and work of cooperating teaching staff in southern Africa compensates for this. For this reason, scholarships are only granted to students based on submission of an application by relevant teaching staff. 

This facilitates development of an ongoing cooperation and dialogue between the Carl Schlettwein Foundation and teaching staff in southern Africa, with the aim of identifying worthy scholarship candidates in addition to strengthening the networks and resources of structures developed by the Carl Schlettwein Foundation.

Mutual interest
Both sides share an interest in and motivation towards collaboration: The institutions in southern Africa receive funding opportunities on behalf of their students as well as access to an international network and greater visibility for their work via the structures of the Carl Schlettwein Foundation. This ensures the quality of the work funded and students selected as well as assessment and supervision by trusted staff onsite, which in turn mutually benefits the various activities and projects sponsored by the Carl Schlettwein Foundation.

All scholarship-supported works are collected by the Basler Afrika Bibliographien and thus made available to the public and research community. Especially notable scholarly works may even be published by the Basler Afrika Bibliographien Publishing House as a monograph or within one of its series.

An alumni list is available here.