Full Tuition Scholarships for the European Microfinance for Developing Countries

Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

The European MicrofinanceProgramme – EMP is directed at students who want to obtain a specialisation in microfinance and acquire expertise by working in a developing country. Each year, 12 full scholarships are awarded to EMP candidates coming from selected developing countries.

Launched in 2005, the EMP is designed by microfinance experts to offer a unique blend of theory and practice. It provides students with a multidisciplinary approach to the challenges facing the microfinance sector today.


Candidates applying for the EMP via the Académie Universitaire Wallonie-Bruxelles (Master Complémentaire Conjoint en Microfinance), should read the General information document(pdf).

All candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • ACADEMIC DEGREE: Applicants must already hold a master Degree, equivalent to 300 ECTS (5 years), from a recognized academic institution in one of the following disciplines: development cooperation, economics, agronomy, management or finance. Exceptionnally, other qualifications may be accepted. Good  academic grades, relevant professional experience and field experience in developing countries are highly valued.
  • ENGLISH LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY: Mastering English is required. As the EMP is taught in English, candidates must prove their spoken and written command of English. Qualifications accepted as evidence of English proficiency are:
    • Native speakers: (USA, UK, AUS, NZL, IRL, CAN (Engl)): no proof needed
    • Applicants from anglophone countries: candidates having completed their studies in English must provide a confirmation by their University.
    • All other candidates:

TOEFL: paper-based 550, computer-based 213, internet-based 79-80
IELTS: min. score of 6.5
Cambridge First Certificate (FCE): pass at grade C or above
Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): pass at grade C or above

Eligible groups

Citizens of several developing countries are eligible to apply.

With more than 50% of students coming from the South, 26 nationalities and experts from all parts of the world, the EMP is a particularly international Mastersprogramme, which allows to create and keep new (professional) networks.

Participating Institution(s)

The EMP is taught by professors from three European universities: in Belgium, Université libre de Bruxelles (Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management) and Université de Mons (Warocqué) both belonging to AcadémieUniversitaire Wallonie-Bruxelles, and in France, Université Paris Dauphine, as well as by experts from international NGOs specialising in microfinance.

ADA, BRS, CERISE, PlaNet Finance and SOS Faim complete the academic perspective with their wealth of expertise in training, information management and technical assistance to the microfinance sector. In addition to providing guest lecturers on a variety of topics, these NGOs are responsible for coordinating the internship component of the programme.

Fields of study

The EMP delivers a professional education that combines academic excellence and real-world experience and aims at broadening our understanding of development and the role that microfinance can play in fighting poverty.

Topics covered by the European Microfinance Programme :

  • General management and governance of microfinance institutions;
  • Development issues and their link to microfinance;
  • Tools for financial analysis;
  • Contracting and microfinance products;
  • Macroeconomics and regulation of microfinance;
  • Organizations and markets structures;
  • Rural and urban microfinance issues.

Number of awards

Twelve (12) FULL scholarships are awarded every year

Sponsorship duration

  • Accessibility is through two different Master programmes:
  • A one-year programme: European Master in Microfinance (Master Complémentaire Conjoint en Microfinance, Académie Universitaire Wallonie-Bruxelles): for candidates having already obtained a Masters Degree.
  • Second year of the Master en Développement durable applique (Université Paris Dauphine)

Sponsorship benefits

The available scholarships cover the tuition fees, some basic living expenses in Brussels and one return plane ticket. For further information on the scholarships provided for the EMP programme, contact Mr Didier TOUSSAINT (emp@ulb.ac.be) or visit the CUD website http://www.cud.be (active link is provided below).

The EMP provides students with a professional, multi-disciplinary approach to the challenges the microfinance sector is facing today, through:

  • a solid theoretical foundation, taught by professors from three European universities in Belgium (Université libre de Bruxelles; Université de Mons) and France (Université Paris Dauphine);
  • insights into the latest techniques used by international microfinance institutions, provided by practitioners from the NGO partners ADA, BRS, CERISE, PlaNet Finance and SOS Faim;
  • opportunities to participate in seminars and conferences addressed to microfinance experts;
  • an organized two-to-fourth-months internship in a developing country to obtain the necessary knowledge of daily realities of micro-finance on the field.

EMP works in close connection with the Centre for European Research in Microfinance (CERMi), which offers optional seminars, conferences, and other research activities to the EMP students (www.cermi.eu).

Please be aware that the internship on the field is compulsory, as part of theprogramme, and that the EMP does not provide any financial support for the expenses related to that internship. However, students have the possibility to look for grants and financial support from foundations, associations, etc.


The EMP programme application deadline date is Wed, 12th February 2014.

The CUD Scholarship deadline date is Wed, 12th February 2014.


For general information on financial assistance:
DGCD: www.dgcd.be/fr/dgcd/bourses_etude
CTB: http://www.btcctb.org/ (see directly with the CTB office based in your country)

For further information on the admission and application procedure,
please contact the EMP Coordination on emp@ulb.ac.be.

Be Sociable, Share!

No Comments

Post your comment comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.