Organizations are invited to submit nominations for candidates to attend the postgraduate diploma programme.
GEST will then contact the qualified nominees and invite them to fill out a more elaborate application form.

The nomination form for the 2025 GEST programme is available here. The last day for submitting nominations for spring term 2025 is 8 March 2024. 

See timeline for the admission process here.

Separate calls are made in GEST's partner universities through the EU Erasmus+ programme for which deadlines for applications vary (see further details below). 

The target group for the GEST postgraduate diploma programme consists of young professionals from low and middle income countries and conflict/post-conflict societies working on gender issues for government ministries and agencies, as well as civil society organizations and educational institutes.

The GEST programme is looking for individuals who:

  • have at least one university degree at BA/BS/BEd level
  • are fluent in both spoken and written English
  • have at least 2 years of professional experience relevant to the advancement of gender equality
  • are junior professionals or young researchers (priority is given to individuals younger than 35 years old)
  • have leadership skills and are in a position to be agents of change
  • are committed to advancing gender equality 
  • are nationals and residents in low or middle income countries, or from conflict/post-conflict societies. Priority is given to candidates from least developed and lower middle income countries as defined on the DAC list. Candidates who are residents and/or nationals of countries not on the DAC list are ineligible to participate in the GEST programme.

Selection process
Once nominations have been reviewed, qualified nominees are invited to submit comprehensive applications. Based both on the nominations, submitted by organizations, and the applications submitted by individual applicants, a limited number of candidates is shortlisted for interviews. During the interviews, candidates need to be able to:

  • Explain their work and their role in the organization
  • Outline how they think the GEST diploma programme will benefit their organization and the population it serves
  • Demonstrate that their proposed project is feasible and implementable within their home organization
  • Show in-depth understanding of their professional work and how it relates to gender equality

Financing of candidates and programme cost
The funding of the diploma programme is based on scholarships that are either 1) funded directly by the GEST programme through its core funding provided by the Government of Iceland, 2) funded by agencies, such as development agencies and other development partners, embassies and governments, 3) co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme and the GEST programme (only applicable for currently enrolled MA students in GEST’s partner universities).

Candidates employed by UN agencies, with the exception of UNRWA, are required to be fully funded by their organizations.

The scholarships cover travel costs for fellows, housing on campus and per-diem during the five-month course, in addition to educational facilities, learning material and lessons.

Erasmus+ scholarships
GEST collaborates with various universities through the European Union’s Erasmus+ programme. This programme enables the GEST programme to invite master's students in gender studies or related disciplines to enroll in the GEST programme. Such scholarships are announced separately by GEST’s partner universities as the candidates’ home universities nominate candidates to the GEST programme. Nominations are screened by GEST, followed by screening interviews. The process is equivalent to the open call applications process.

For all candidates: Here you can find Tips and tricks on how to write a good application and prepare for screening interviews, and here you may find answers to some frequently asked questions about the programme and living in Iceland.