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Development expert bags 2021 Fulbright Scholarship

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Bridi Rice bags Fulbright Scholarship

Bridi Rice, a former Director at the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) and current Co-Convenor of the Asia-Pacific Development, Diplomacy and Defence Dialogue, has won the 2021 Fulbright Professional Scholarship in Non-Profit Leadership (Fulbright Scholarship).

The Fulbright Scholarship funds an emerging leader in the not-for-profit (NFP) sector to undertake research and/or professional development in the U.S. for three to four months. It is funded by Perpetual and supported by the Australian Scholarships Foundation (ASF).

Caitriona Fay, Managing Partner, Community and Social Investments at Perpetual said, “This Fulbright Scholarship is truly a unique opportunity and Perpetual is proud to support and advance the thinking of the NFP sector’s emerging leaders.”

Sam Sayers, CEO at the ASF commented: “This is our ninth year of supporting NFP leaders through the Fulbright Scholarship. At a time when Australia’s foreign policy is under more focus than it has been for decades, providing more opportunity for a top-quality foreign policy mind like Bridi’s to work with leading thinkers from around the world is exactly the kind of societal contribution the Fulbright Scholarships were designed for.”

Rice will use her Fulbright Scholarship working with and in a variety of Washington based think tanks, civil society organisations and media outlets to re-imagine the foreign policy think tanks of the future.

“There are a few big questions I’m focusing on,” said Rice.

“How do think tanks influence policy in the modern era? What can we take from the past to make them more effective? And what can we bring from the future – in areas like artificial intelligence, office-less transnational connections, globally diverse boards and big data – to ensure they address the emerging issues of our time?”

Speaking on behalf of the Australian-American Fulbright Commission, Executive Director Thomas Dougherty said: “We’re very pleased to announce Bridi as a 2021 Fulbright Scholar. Her experience with ACFID shares a natural affinity with the aims of the Fulbright Program, and her research in Washington DC will foster valuable dialogue for think tanks both in Australia and the United States”.

“This Fulbright Scholarship is a dream come true,” said Rice.

“Reimagining how we listen, think and do development cooperation as a nation has never been more critical. I can’t wait to embed myself in Washington’s foreign policy community, learning from some of the smartest minds, collecting the brightest ideas and forging diverse networks – all of which I hope will help create a new, modern platform for development in the Indo-Pacific.”

The Fulbright Professional Scholarship in Non-Profit Leadership is valued up to $30,000. Fulbright Scholarship applications are now open for the 10th year and will close on 6 July 2021.

Australian Fulbright Scholarship candidates are interviewed and selected by panels of experts from academia, government, not-for-profit and professional organisations as well as the U.S. Embassy.

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