Academic-AwardsAward for Academic Excellence in Buddhist Studies 

Khyentse Foundation currently partners with Buddhist Studies programs at 14 universities on four continents to encourage excellence in Buddhist scholarship through the KF Award for Excellence in Buddhist Studies. The foundation provides US$1,500 per university per year, and the departments choose the award winners. In the grand scheme of academic expenses, $1,500 is not a huge sum, but it is our way of showing respect for the good intentions and hard work these students are investing in their studies. Many have expressed that this gesture of encouragement has been a positive influence on their path.  Read about some of the areas of study from the 2016 winners.

Academic-AwardsPrize for Outstanding Translation

With the aim of encouraging and honoring excellence in translation works that make the Buddhist heritage accessible to a broader public, the Khyentse Foundation Prize for Outstanding Translation was initiated in 2011. The prize is for translations from the main classical languages of Buddhism—Pali, Sanskrit, Tibetan, and Chinese—into English. The original text may be a sutra, commentary, treatise, biography, history, liturgy, or practice manual, from any tradition of Buddhism, published within the preceding 2 years. It may be by a single individual or a collaboration. In the latter case, the US$8,000 prize is divided equally among the translators.


2022 Professor Luis Gómez and Professor Paul Harrison for their teamwork on Vimalakīrtinirdeśa: The Teaching of Vimalakīrti
Prof. Richard Salomon for the Translation of The Buddhist literature of Ancient Gandhāra: An Introduction with Selected Translations
2019 Dr. Karl Brunnhölzl for the First Translation of a Text on the Yogācāra School of Mahāyāna Buddhism
2018 Andy Rotman of Smith College, for his translation Divine Stories: Divyāvadāna, Part 2
2016 Anne MacDonald, for her translation In Clear Words. The Prasannapadā, Chapter One. Vol. 1. Introduction, Manuscript Description, Sanskrit Text. Vol 2. Annotated Translation, Tibetan Text.
2015 Mark Blum of the University of California at Berkeley for The Nirvana Sutra (Mahaparinirvana-sutra), Volume I. Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai America, Inc. 2013 (BDK English Tripitaka Series).
2014 This award was shared between Professor Shōryū Katsura and Professor Mark Siderits for their work on the translation of Nāgārjuna’s Middle Way: Mūlamadhyamakakārikā.
2013 Ven. Bikkhu Bodhi for his work The Numerical Discourses of the Buddha: A Complete Translation of the Anguttara Nikaya.
2012 Todd Lewis, of Holycross University, and Subarna Man Tuladhar for their translation of Chittadhar Hridaya’s Sugata Saurabha: An Epic Poem from Nepal on the Life of the Buddha.

Watch Prize for Outstanding Translation Video

Academic-AwardsAward for Outstanding PhD Dissertation in Buddhist Studies, Europe and Asia 

In 2013, KF established the Award for Outstanding PhD Dissertation, presented every year to an outstanding PhD candidate with a dissertation in the field of Buddhist studies. The US$8,000 awards are alternated annually between those written in universities in China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan and those written in Europe during the two academic years prior to the nomination. The dissertations must be based on original research in the relevant primary language, and they should significantly advance our understanding of the subject or Buddhist scriptures studied. Accredited institutions that offer PhD programs in Buddhist studies or religious studies in China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan, or in any European country (including the United Kingdom), are invited to nominate. For more information, contact the dissertation award coordinator here.


2022 Asian Award Winner: Eng Jin Ooi, Mahidol University
2021 European Award Winner:
Yael Shiri, SOAS, University of London
2020 Asian Award Winners: 
Mingyuan Gao of the Buddha Dharma Center of Hong Kong and Su-an Lin of Chengchi University of Taiwan
2019 European Award Winner: Cécile Ducher, the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes – PSL in France
2018 Asian Award Winner: Wenli Fan, Chinese University of Hong Kong
2017 European Award Winner:
Christopher V. Jones of St Peter’s College, Oxford University 
2016 Asian Award Winner: 
Mao Yufan of the Chinese University of Hong Kong
2015 European Award Winners: Dr. Jens Wilhelm Borgland and Dr. David Higgins
2014 Asian Award Winner: Dr. Chao Tung-Ming of National Taiwan University 

Academic-AwardsThe Khyentse Foundation Fellowship

The Khyentse Foundation Fellowship is KF’s top honor with a $30,000 award to support the recipient’s continued activity in preserving and promoting the Buddhadharma. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche personally heads the committee that selects winners. The award may or may not be given annually.


2022 Erik Pema Kunsang
2020 Venerable Wei Wu
Professor Gao Mingdao
Wulstan Fletcher and John Canti
2015 Venerable Dhammajoti
2012 KF Fellow Professor Peter Skilling
2011 Fellow (anonymous)

Watch 2015 KF Fellowship Video

Award for Academic Excellence in Buddhist Studies Partner Universities

Chulalongkorn University

Chulalongkorn University, Thailand


Fudan University, Shanghai

Hong Kong University

Hong Kong University

National Chen Chi

National Cheng Chi University, Taiwan

National Taiwan University

National Taiwan University


School of Oriental and African Studies, London

Peking University, Beijing

University of British Columbia, Canada


University of California at Berkeley


University of Hamburg, Germany

University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka

University of Pennsylvania

University of Pennsylvania

University of Sydney

University of Sydney, Australia

“I am very fortunate to be a recipient of the award from Khyentse Foundation. It will be a twofold help to me: financially, it is a timely support, and mentally, it is a generous encouragement. I will be always grateful to the foundation and your sponsors. In my everyday life, I will turn my gratefulness to you into kindness to people I meet.”
Ma Shengnan

2016 KF Award for Excellence in Buddhist Studies winner, University of Peking