ILO RTA Project Seed Grants for Masters and PhD Students 2021 (Up to $10,000)

Deadline: April 16, 2021

Applications are open for the International Labour Organisation (ILO) RTA Project Seed Grants for Masters and PhD Students 2021. The “From Research to Action” (RTA) project aims at accelerating the use of rigorous research by policymakers and practitioners in support to efforts to tackle child labour, forced labour, and human trafficking around the world.

To safeguard the rights of all workers, including migrant workers, this project commits to engage researchers and promote new interest to strengthen the evidence base for achieving SDG 8.7.

The RTA project will award ten seed grants for research from a variety of disciplines on child labour, forced labour, and human trafficking issues. The project start date is within the first month of the award date and subject to funds availability and the approval of extension of the RTA project by the Donor.


  • The project will provide seed grants up to a maximum of US$10,000 each for the period of 9 months.


  • Open to researchers of all nationalities who want to advance knowledge in the field of child labour, forced labour, or human trafficking;
  • The principal applicant must either have a PhD degree, or enrolled in a PhD or master’s program.
  • The principal applicant must be affiliated to an eligible host organization, i.e. University or Research Institute.
  • For research that is already underway, applicants must justify how the ongoing research is relevant to child labour, forced labour, and human trafficking. Applicants must specify which part of the research will be supplemented by the seed funding and how the topic areas are part of a core research question.


Applicants must complete the online application form in English and send the following documents in one PDF document to with the subject title “RTA seed grant application, [Last name], [first

The complete package must include:

  • A cover Letter summarizing the applicant(s)’ experience and motivations;
  • A detailed Curriculum Vitae including a list of publication (if any) for each applicant;
  • A research proposal of 3-5 pages specifying the objectives of the work, the methodology and its relevance in the field of child labour, forced labour, or human trafficking;
  • A recommendation letter from the proposed supervisor (not required for senior researchers);
  • Proof of enrolment or affiliation to the university or research institution.

Research proposal components

  • Abstract: 250 words;
  • Clearly state the problem/importance of research/research question
  • Detailed description of proposed research methodology;
  • (For junior researchers): List advisor(s) and provide short description of their experience in the area of research;
  • (For senior researchers): Describe how the research would fit into the program of work at the research institute;
  • Develop timeline for research completion within 9 months;
  • A budget proposal and description for the proposed expenses.

Click here to complete the application form

For more information, visit ILO Seed Grants.