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The Leakey Foundation exclusively funds research related to human origins.

The Leakey Foundation awards around $1,500,000 in grants annually to grantees at science and education institutions around the world.

Our current funding priorities include:

  • Paleoanthropology of the Miocene, Pliocene, and Pleistocene
  • Primates: Evolution, behavior, morphology, ecology, endocrinology, genetics, isotope studies
  • Modern hunter-gatherer groups

We offer funding through the following five grant programs:

Leakey Foundation Research Grants

Research Grants are awarded twice annually (in May and December) and constitute the majority of the Foundation’s granting program.

Baldwin Fellowships

The Franklin Mosher Baldwin Memorial Fellowships are awarded once annually in May and are intended for students from countries where there are limited opportunities for advanced training and education in fields of research related to the study of human origins. This program allows students to obtain education or training from an institution outside their home country.

Primate Research Fund

This program provides emergency funding available to keep long-term* primate field sites operational until other funding can be secured. Priority will be given to those sites that have a clear research and conservation focus and that are threatened with the loss of long-term datasets.

Francis H. Brown African Scholarship Fund

The purpose of the Francis H. Brown African Scholarship Fund is to expand human knowledge and scientific interest in earth sciences and botany related to human origins by providing financial assistance to East African researchers and students pursuing research in these areas. The fund is further intended to support research that builds on the work of Dr. Francis H. Brown and builds capacity in the earth and botanical sciences in Ethiopian, Eritrean, and Kenyan institutions.

Joan Cogswell Donner Field School Scholarship

This scholarship provides up to $2,000 towards field school tuition for students who are from countries with limited resources to support training in fieldwork related to human origins research.