South African National Biodiversity Institute – Internship Programme: Nature Conservation

Application form

Closes: Wednesday, 30 September 2020 (successful candidates will be notified by 27 November 2020)
Location: Newlands, Cape Town

Joan Wrench Kirstenbosch Scholarship Fund Internship Programme

The Joan Wrench Kirstenbosch Scholarship Fund was established in 2018 to recognise academic achievement of young professionals and to provide financial support to pursue practical training or postgraduate studies in relevant biodiversity fields.

The South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) is pleased to announce a call for applications for internships in any of the following fields at the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Newlands, Cape Town:

  • Biodiversity informatics
  • Biodiversity monitoring
  • Citizen science
  • Environmental Education
  • Ex-situ conservation (seedbanking), Threatened Species, Restoration
  • Freshwater ecology/Freshwater biodiversity conservation
  • Garden and Nursery development
  • Genetically Modified Organisms (Biotechnology/Biosafety)
  • GIS/Biodiversity planning
  • Horticulture
  • Marine ecosystem assessment
  • Nature Conservation
  • Phylogenetics/Herpetology
  • Plant and animal data
  • Plant physiology
  • Plant taxonomy
  • Restoration ecology


Candidates must be enthusiastic and have a keen interest in the conservation of biodiversity. No prior working experience is required but a strong academic record at university will be an advantage. A driving license with at least one year’s driving experience will be an added advantage for those who will be doing fieldwork as part of the internship. These internships are only available to South African citizens and will be awarded in line with national equity targets.

See below minimum qualifications for placement options:

Biodiversity informaticsMSc Informatics / Botany / Zoology
Biodiversity monitoringBSc / Honours GIS or Statistical Ecology
Citizen scienceBSc Honours Restoration Ecology
Environmental EducationBSc Environmental Science
Ex-situ conservation (seedbanking), Threatened Species, RestorationBTech/Advanced Diploma Horticulture or BSc or BSc Honours Botany
Freshwater ecology / Freshwater biodiversity conservationMSc Freshwater Ecology / Hydrology / Soil Science/Botany and/or GIS
Garden and Nursery developmentDiploma or BTech/Advanced Diploma Horticulture
Genetically Modified Organisms (Biotechnology/Biosafety)BSc Honours Botany/Zoology/Biotechnology
GIS / Biodiversity planningBSc Honours Environmental/Natural Sciences
HorticultureBTech/Advanced Diploma Horticulture
Marine ecosystem assessmentBSc Honours Marine Biology or MSc Marine Biology
Nature ConservationBTech/Advanced Diploma Nature Conservation
Phylogenetics / HerpetologyBSc or MSc Zoology
Plant and animal dataBSc Honours Environmental Science / Computer Science (with Data Science)
Plant physiologyBTech/Advanced Diploma Horticulture or BSc Honours Botany
Plant taxonomyBSc or BSc Honours or MSc Botany
Restoration ecologyBSc Honours Restoration Ecology


  • Applicants must be South African citizens
  • Applicants must not be enrolled for higher degrees for the duration of the internships
  • Applicants can only apply for one of the positions

Internship monthly stipend values:

  • Bachelors completed (or equivalent to NQF 7): R7 260
  • Honours completed (or equivalent to NQF 8): R8 580
  • Masters completed (or equivalent to NQF 9): R9 900

Application procedure:

Each application is to be accompanied by a standard application cover sheet.

Applications are to include a letter of interest; full CV; certified copies of academic record/transcript and highest qualification; as well as ID and driver’s license and a letter of academic reference. Send all documents to with “Joan Wrench Kirstenbosch Scholarship Fund internships” in the subject line.

SANBI reserves the right not to fill these internships. If no response has been received within 60 days of the closing date, candidates may assume that their applications were unsuccessful.

Dr Ferozah Conrad

Ms René du Toit