Explorers

Photo: Young Explorer grantee Ian Nichols

Photograph by Dr. Kathryn Jeffery

Young Explorers Grants (YEG) offer opportunities to individuals ages 18 to 25 to pursue research, conservation, and exploration-related projects consistent with National Geographic's existing grant programs, including: the Committee for Research and Exploration (CRE), the Expeditions Council (EC), and the Conservation Trust (CT). In addition, the YEG program recently teamed with the Luce Foundation to provide increased funding opportunities for fieldwork in 18 Northeast and Southeast Asian countries, including Brunei, Burma/Myanmar, Cambodia, China, East Timor, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Mongolia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Eligibility

The Young Explorers Grants Program supports a variety of projects—and an age-range of applicants—that are generally not covered by other sources of funding.

Applicants are not required to have advanced degrees. However, a record of prior experience in the fields of research, conservation, or exploration should be submitted as it pertains to the proposed project.

Funding is not restricted to United States citizens—foreign nationals are invited to apply. Researchers planning work in countries abroad should make great effort to include at least one local collaborator as part of their team.

Where Should I Apply?

The Committee for Research and Exploration funds hypothesis-based scientific research. Consult the CRE website for more information on the fields of research funded.

The Conservation Trust funds innovative and applied approaches to conservation with potential for global application. Consult the CT website for more information on the types of projects funded.

The Expeditions Council funds exploration and adventure around the world. Consult the EC website for more information on the types of programs funded.

Grant Limits

Young Explorers Grants vary in amount depending on significance of the project, though most range between US $2,000 and $5,000 at the maximum. National Geographic Society funds often serve as complementary support—thus the program encourages applicants to seek additional, concurrent funding from other sources.

Grant Restrictions

National Geographic Society grants may not be used for indirect costs, overhead, and other expenses not directly related to the project. Fringe benefits are also excluded, as are salaries.

Funds may not be used for travel to scientific/professional meetings or conferences, tuition, vacations, study abroad programs, volunteer activities, legal actions, land acquisition, endowments, construction of permanent field stations, or publication of research results.

Grant recipients are expected to provide the National Geographic Society with rights of first refusal for popular publication and other media coverage of their findings.

Obtaining an Application Form

Applying for a Young Explorers Grant is a two-step process.

First, you must submit a pre-application form online. If your pre-application is approved, you will be sent an email with a link and a password giving you access to our full application online.

Before you submit a pre-application, there are a few things you should take into consideration:

Meet Our Explorers

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    Explorers A-Z

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