The Microsoft Research Dissertation Grant

Microsoft recognizes the value of diversity in computing. At Microsoft, they believe in the value of research, for their own work and for the world we live in. Hence they are pleased to announce the “Microsoft Research Dissertation Grant” for Ph.D. students. To be eligible for the program, the applicant must be enrolled in your fourth year or beyond of Ph.D. studies and self-identify with a group under-represented in computing. The program aims to increase the pipeline of diverse talent receiving advanced degrees in computing-related fields by providing a research funding opportunity for doctoral students from groups under-represented in computing. The 2017 Grant recipients will receive funding up to 20,000 USD for the academic year 2017–18.

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  • Ph.D. students must be enrolled at a university in the United States or Canada and doing dissertation work that relates to computing topics in which Microsoft Research has expertise (click on Research Areas at the top of the page for a full list).
  • Ph.D. students must be in their fourth year or beyond in a Ph.D. program when they apply for this grant. The student must continue to be enrolled at the university in the autumn of 2017. Funding is for use only during their time in the Ph.D. program; it cannot be used for support in a role past graduation, such as a postdoc or faculty position. The applicant will need to confirm their Ph.D. program starting month and year, as well as their expected graduation month and year.
  • Payment of the grant, as described above, will be made directly to the grant recipient’s university and dispersed according to the university’s policies.
  • Applicants must attest that they self-identify with at least one group under-represented in computing. This includes women, African-American/Black, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian/Alaskan Native, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, and/or people with disabilities.
  • International students(those who are not the citizen of U.S and Canada but attending a school in the United States or Canada) are eligible to apply.

How to Apply:

To be applying for the grant, you may apply online through the given link:

Supporting Documents:

Applications must include:

  • Curriculum vitae
  • Thesis topic description (maximum two pages, font no smaller than 10 points)
  • Description of how the grant would be used, including a budget (maximum one page)
  • Contact information for three references (at least one of which must be from your primary academic advisor/supervisor)
  • Three to six names of Microsoft researchers, chosen for topical relevance, who you would agree to be paired with as a mentor. A list of researchers and research areas can be found on our people web-page (

Financial Aid and Award Money:

  • The 2017 Microsoft Research Dissertation Grant recipients will receive funding up to 20,000 USD for the academic year 2017–18 to help them complete research as part of their doctoral thesis work.
  • Microsoft will arrange and pay for travel and accommodations to grant recipients to attend a two-day Microsoft Research workshop in Redmond, Washington, in autumn 2017.
  • The workshop will provide grant recipients an opportunity to present their research, meet individually with Microsoft researchers in their research area and receive career coaching from Microsoft researchers.

Application Deadline:

  • The 2017 Microsoft Research Dissertation Grant application period closes on Friday, April 7, 2017, at 11:59 PM Pacific Time.
  • All three contacts must submit your reference letters by Monday, April 24 at 11:59 PM Pacific Time in order for your application to be considered.
  • Selected grant applicants will receive notification no later than Friday, June 30, 2017.

Link for More Information:

Contact Information:

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