USAID/IIE Emerging Markets Development Advisers Fellowship Program

The Emerging Markets Development Advisers Program is a fellowship sponsored by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). EMDAP is managed by the Institute of International Education (IIE), the largest private, not-for-profit educational and cultural exchange agency in the United States.

EMDAP is an opportunity for current students and recent graduates of MBA/MA/MPP or other graduate studies programs (from both foreign and domestic universities) focused on international management/ finance/development or international affairs/studies to provide management assistance to various USAID-assisted entities in emerging markets.

EMDAP Advisers contribute to development in emerging market countries by using their knowledge of management practices to identify solutions in diverse situations. This contributes to achieving USAID’s objectives abroad—specifically, broad-based economic development.


EMDAP Advisers are awarded a grant that includes the following:

  • Monthly living allowance
  • Monthly housing allowance
  • Monthly transportation allowance
  • Language training where necessary
  • Health insurance
  • Round-trip airfare from the US to the host country
  • Option to the use of a laptop computer for the duration of their assignment
  • Other allowances that vary from country to country


  • One-year professional, hands-on work experience in an emerging market
  • The unique opportunity to network with international organizations and NGOs
  • Immersion in an overseas culture for one year
  • Enhance professional opportunities to work with USAID and its implementing partners

Eligibility & Timeline

Applicants are required to possess:

  • U.S. citizenship
    • Note: Non-US citizens are eligible applicants only if EMDAP has a position in their country of nationality.
  • A minimum of 2-3 years of work experience in such areas as: project management, marketing, social services, finance, Peace Corps, NGO or private sector experience, consulting, etc.
  • Be recent graduates (within 5 years) of a graduate studies program (MA, MBA, MPP, MIA, JD, etc.) OR current students who will have completed their first year of graduate coursework. Graduates and students from both foreign and U.S. universities are eligible if the university is accredited and offers an accredited program in international management/ finance/development, international affairs/studies or related subjects.
  • University approval for leave between the first and second years of the applicant’s graduate program and the university’s endorsement of the applicant’s candidacy if he/she will still be enrolled in the academic institution at the time of the assignment.

What is the typical timeline for the application process?

Once an assignment has been announced, interested candidates should submit their application, resume and recommendation letters within the specified time period. Applications will be reviewed by an EMDAP selection committee, and top candidates will have an in-person or phone interview with committee members. Selected candidates will then be considered by USAID, the implementing partner and the host organization for final selection. The exact timeline for recruitment and selection will depend on the needs of the assignment.

Who are the Selection Committee members?

The Selection Committee is composed of EMDAP Alumni and International development professionals who are prominent in the fields covered by the EMDAP Fellowship and actively involved in international relations. Please note that the decision of whom to move on to the interview stage of the fellowship is made solely at the discretion of the Selection Committee members.

What is the duration of the program?

Typical assignments run for 12 months.


To prepare Advisers for their assignments, IIE conducts a one week pre-departure orientation in August/September. During the orientation, Advisers become familiar with USAID, its mission and operation. They also participate in cross-cultural training, discuss logistical and settling-in issues, gather country and assignment-relevant information through research and meetings with USAID and other agency officials. Successful completion of the orientation is a prerequisite for participating in the EMDAP. Adviser in-country orientation, general settling-in assistance and ongoing support is provided by in-country supervisors identified by IIE in each host country.

EMDAP is designed to provide technical support in management practices to overseas organizations. By targeting assistance to the requirements of small to medium sized organizations that serve them, EMDAP supports the USAID strategy of human resource capacity building as an essential element for broad based, sustainable economic growth.

EMDAP staff in Washington work closely with USAID missions and host organizations to review candidate qualifications and match them with appropriate work assignments. Each Adviser serves for 10/12 months, sometimes longer, providing professional assistance to middle and upper management. Placements are made where USAID is present in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean, the Middle East and Eurasia.

Positions are based within local organizations and USAID implementing partners at the middle and upper managerial levels in such areas as:

  • Financial planning and cost control
  • Loan portfolio tracking and analysis
  • Production efficiency, inventory systems and quality control
  • Marketing, sales and import/export
  • Human resource development/management
  • Information systems and database management
  • Strategy development/implementation
  • Property development
  • Policy Analysis & Coordination
  • Public/Private Partnership Alliances


At the end of the assignment, Advisers still enrolled in a degree program return to complete course work at their respective university. This campus period provides opportunity for returned Advisers to share their impressions of working in a developing country with colleagues and professors.

Advisers who have already completed their degree program often choose to stay on to continue work in their host country upon completion of their EMDAP assignment or choose careers avenues with NGO, private or governmental organizations.

Application Documents

To join the EMDAP mailing list and receive notifications of potential assignments, please send a copy of your resume to Application materials will be distributed and posted when an assignment has been announced.

Visit the official link

Image of 2019 Centennial Fellows

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.