"Through the hard work of the Trudeau Foundation, I’ve been blessed to spend time with this diverse and evolving crowd, and have been inspired by their collective dedication in order to work as hard as I possibly can to advance my own understanding and our society’s responses to HIV transmission among vulnerable drug-using populations." 2012 Trudeau Scholar Daniel Werb

We Value People

Each year, the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation rewards outstanding doctoral candidates who are enrolled or about to be enrolled in a social sciences and humanities program and who are doing research in areas related to our four themes. This award, the most prestigious of its type in Canada, has continuously attracted the very best scholars in the social sciences and humanities, individuals with a passion for public engagement and who are likely to become leading national and international figures.

We Build Connections

The award supports interdisciplinary research and original fieldwork by providing a substantial yearly allowance for research and travel, enabling the Scholars to gain first-hand contact with the diverse communities that can enrich their studies. Moreover, each Scholar is paired with a distinguished Trudeau Mentor selected by the Foundation among the most eminent Canadian practitioners in all sectors of public life. The Scholarship also offers the opportunity to interact with an exceptional community of leaders and committed individuals in every field of the social sciences and humanities, to participate in events organized by the Foundation and to hold their own workshops, through available financial support.

We Encourage Audacity

Candidates are evaluated based on their academic achievement, which must be on par with the highest standards of the world’s most prestigious doctoral scholarship programs. Future scholars must also demonstrate an ability to engage in lively exchange with other researchers and scholars, and have an expressed desire to contribute to public dialogue. Future scholars must be willing to commit their time and energy to work with Trudeau mentors, fellows, and scholars on cross-sectoral projects not necessarily related to their doctoral research. For more information, please consult the Funding Agreement with Trudeau scholars.


  • Up to 15 new Scholars are announced each year in May
  • The annual value is up to $60,000 per Scholar (including an annual travel allowance of $20,000) for up to four years
  • Total number of complete Scholarship application files received from 2003 to 2014: 2031
  • Total number of Scholarships awarded from 2003 to 2014: 171
  • Close to 250 nominations are carefully examined in the selection process every year
  • Total amount spent through the Scholarship program from 2003 to 2014: $19,2 million
  • Typically the largest program expense for the Foundation: 39%
  • Portion of overall Foundation expenses: 28% in 2010-2012

Trudeau Scholars, active in public life and academia:

  • Pascale Fournier, a 2003 Trudeau Scholar, is Research Chair in legal pluralism and comparative law and Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law of the University of Ottawa. She has held a seat for one year on the “Younger Comparativists Committee” of the American Society of Comparative Law and has prepared public policy papers for the Canadian Council of Muslim Women and the United Nations Development Program, with whom she worked in 2008 as an expert consultant on equal rights issues for Muslim women. She was awarded the Raymond-Blais Award from the University of Laval in 2008 for her accomplishments and she received the distinction of Advocatus Emeritus from the Québec Bar in 2009.
  • David R. Boyd, a 2005 Trudeau Scholar, is a prominent activist in Canadian environment law. He is an Adjunct Professor at Simon Fraser University, a Visiting Researcher at the University of Victoria and an environmental advisor for governments from Canada to Sweden. Mr. Boyd is also an established author; among others, he has written Dodging the Toxic Bullet : How to Protect Yourself from Everyday Environmental Health Hazards and co-wrote Suzuki, The Green Guide with David Suzuki, which received critical acclaim. His essays and comments are frequently published in the Globe and Mail and other Canadian daily newspapers.