The Philosophy Institute at Austral University offers up-to twenty Austral-Templeton Scholarships to Latin American academics based at Latin American universities for the newly launched blended (part online and part residential) MA and PhD programs on Philosophy of Natural and Cognitive Sciences.

Austral-Templeton Scholarships will cover the annual fees and credits for the first two years of the program, and they will be held from the start of the program on August 2020 until July 2022, a period during which students will take most of their coursework.

These scholarships are funded with a generous grant from the John Templeton Foundation and will be awarded to all the students of the first cohort. All application materials should be sent before 3 May 2020.

Aim of the Scholarships

The purpose of these scholarships is to allow Latin American academics, with a keen interest in interdisciplinary research on issues at the intersection of science, philosophy and theology, who teach philosophy or theology at Latin American universities, to start a postgraduate degree on Philosophy of Natural and Cognitive Sciences at the Philosophy Institute of Austral University.

These MA and PhD programs involve a demanding initial two-year period of coursework, in which students will get acquainted with, and develop logical acumen on, the newest developments in interdisciplinary research on the philosophy of the natural sciences, philosophy of the person, science and theology, philosophical theology, and epistemology. In addition to personalized tutoring, students will also receive training in methodological aspects of academic work, such as paper and proposal writing, and preparation for conference presentations.


Scholarship candidates must be Latin American academics working at Latin American universities, ideally lecturing philosophy or theology courses at their home institutions, and fulfil all eligibility criteria for the doctoral program.

Postgraduate candidates must:

  • Have a demonstrable interest in interdisciplinary issues pertaining to the intersection of science, philosophy and theology.
  • Read English to a high standard and be able to hold a conversation in English, as all courses and seminars will include readings in English, and some graduate seminars will be delivered in English.
  • Hold an undergraduate degree in philosophy or theology, or a closely related discipline, of at least four years of duration.
  • Possess the ability to work remotely, to conduct research autonomously, to analyze complex problems, and to develop sound arguments.


Successful Scholarship candidates will be expected to dedicate two full days to the program to:

  • take online compulsory core and elective courses of the doctoral program
  • interact and discuss their work regularly with other Austral-Templeton Scholars, contributing to the hybrid methodology of the program
  • take all three methodological seminars, writing two essays on subjects of their choice
  • produce a dissertation research project by the end of the second year of scholarship

In addition to these activities, scholars must:

  • actively participate in the four residential Intensive Study Weeks at the Philosophy Institute in Pilar, Argentina
  • present their two essays in academic events (with at least one at the fourth residential Intensive Study Week at the Philosophy Institute)

Selection Criteria

The team at the Philosophy Institute will assess applications according to the following criteria:

  • Applicant’s academic achievement to the stage of their career
  • Applicant’s potential for engagement with contemporary research on science, philosophy and theology at an international level
  • Institutional support for the candidate’s development and vision for developing future interdisciplinary research on science, philosophy, and theology
  • Prospects for effective academic outputs and outcomes

Applicants should explain how they meet these criteria in their statement of interest.

Scholarships application instructions

Austral-Templeton Scholars will be selected in an open call for applications across Latin America, administered by the Philosophy Institute, Austral University.

Interested candidates should submit their applications in Spanish, in PDF format to, by 3 May 2020. The subject line must say: “Solicitud – Beca Doctorado [o Maestría]”.

On the week of March 30, the Academic Board will be available to have online interviews previously scheduled with possible candidates. The aim of these interviews is to clarify any doubts on the programs and the process of scholarship and admission applications.

All applications must include:

  • A statement of interest, in the form of a letter to the Academic Committee, of no more than 750 words, explaining how the applicant meets the selection criteria (see below). It is strongly suggested to address explicitly these questions in your letter:
    • Which feature attracts you the most to this doctoral/MA degree?
    • How do your academic career and past experience evidence your potential to develop interdisciplinary research?
    • What do you expect to achieve after your degree?
  • Applicant’s academic curriculum vitae (indicating English proficiency).
  • A statement of support from the applicant’s home institution stating their commitment to continue supporting the applicant during their doctoral studies, and their institutional vision for developing future interdisciplinary research on science, philosophy, and theology.
  • A non-binding preliminary research proposal of up to 1,000 words (excluding references). This proposal must:
    • Make explicit the Philosophy Institute’s area of research under which your research would fall.
    • Propose a tentative and non-binding research topic.
    • Make explicit and explain the big question that will guide your research.
  • One sample writing on an issue related to the PhD curricula, either in English or Spanish, of between 2000 and 4000 words.
  • Two academic reference letters, with the name of the applicant clearly indicated. Referees should send the letters themselves – not the applicant – by email to, with the subject line: “Reference for –applicant’s name-”. Reference letters must answer the following questions explicitly, including any other relevant information:
    • For how long have you known the applicant?
    • In which capacity did you interact with the applicant?
    • What are the applicant’s main academic qualities (in terms of research, team-work, lecturing, student reach, etc.)?
    • Why should the applicant be selected as an Austral-Templeton Scholar?

All application materials should be sent electronically in PDF format before 3 May 2020 to The subject line must say: “Solicitud – Beca Doctorado [o Maestría]”.

The Academic Board may conduct interviews with the candidates it deems necessary. These interviews will be from May 11, 2020.

Notifications will be circulated by 1 June 2020.

The MA and PhD programs start on 20 July 2020.