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Arts Humanities and Social Sciences Research

 

Most fellowship funding opportunities can be combined so that a similar but adapted proposal can be submitted to various funding bodies. Please be aware of differences in eligible costs (usually the amount of research expenses and cap of funding for teaching replacement) as well as the different minimum and maximum duration of each scheme. The following table provides a rough overview of the schemes. Please find more details below on each scheme. For an overview of all the Fellowships see this table

Click on each scheme below for more information. 

If you're an early career researcher, you may find it useful to check the list of fellowships for early career researchers.

AHRC Research, development and engagement fellowships: standard route to support mid-career and established researchers

Funding: between £50,000 and £300,000 fEC

Duration: Between 6 and 18 months

Timetable: Open call

Eligibility: You can apply if you are a postdoctoral researcher with at least two years’ experience and have worked at least one year at an eligible organisation. You must have the support of your host organisation throughout the fellowship. Flexible time arrangements are possible but the PI cannot commit less than 50 percent of their time at any point during the fellowship and only request up to 100 percent of time for up to 12 months and has to make a part-time arrangement for the remaining time. 

Strong evidence of institutional support for the proposed fellow’s career and leadership development before, during and after the award is required from the university. This refers for example to evidence of commitment to past, present and future support, leadership development programme, sabbaticals, PhD studentships, support for knowledge exchange and networking, nomination for prizes, etc.

Purpose: The aims of the Research, development and engagement fellowships (previously the Leadership Fellows) are for researchers:

  • to develop their capabilities as research leaders,
  • to carry out excellent individual research which has the potential to generate a transformative impact on their discipline, and which is of exceptional intellectual scope and importance,
  • to develop and undertake innovative and collaborative leadership activities which are connected to their research and which will result in benefits from their own discipline(s) and beyond,
  • to sustain and enhance research capacity in areas which may currently be under-supported for a variety of reason.

Scheme's website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

British Academy Mid-Career Fellowships

Funding: Salary costs are paid up to a maximum of £80,000 and to an award total of £200,000 (100% fEC), including up to £10,000 research expenses.

Duration: Between 6 and 12 months.

Timetable: Deadline is once a year mid-September.

Eligibility: Applicants should be within 15 years from the award of their doctorate but career breaks will be taken into account. Also established researchers without doctorate will be eligible. The applicant should have ‘already published works of intellectual distinction or have established a significant track record as an excellent communication and “champion” in their field’.

Purpose: The aim of the scheme is to allow successful applicants to obtain time freed from normal teaching and administrative commitments. The time bought by the scheme should be devoted to the completion of a major piece of research, and the Academy will also look for evidence of a clear commitment to a strategy of public engagement with and communication of the results of the research during the period of the Fellowship.

Scheme's website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

British Academy/Leverhulme Trust Senior Research Fellowships

Funding: Only replacement costs usually at the starting level of a first time appointment will be covered. Research expenses are not covered by the award but can be sought through a separate application to the British Academy Small Grants Scheme.

Duration: 12 months

Timetable: losing date for applications is usually mid-November of each year.

Eligibility: The Academy takes no account of an applicant's age or current status (e.g. Professor, Lecturer) in determining eligibility for these awards. Rather, in all cases, award-holders are expected to be able to disseminate the results of their research not only through publications, but also through feeding into their future academic career after the end of the awards. Any field of study in the humanities and social sciences is suitable for support. Additionally, applicants must be employed in a UK institution.

Purpose: These awards are intended primarily to provide opportunities for scholars who have already published works of intellectual distinction and who have been hampered in their efforts to accomplish a major piece of research by heavy teaching and administrative duties over a lengthy period, with little prospect of relief from any source. The British Academy is looking particularly therefore to help mid-career scholars.

Scheme's website 

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

British Academy Wolfson Research Professorships

Funding: The value of the award is fixed at £150,000 over three years, mainly aimed at covering the cost of replacement teaching. The difference can be used for research expenses.

Duration: 3 years.

Timetable: Deadline is usually early December.

Eligibility: The Academy takes no account of an applicant's age or current status (eg Professor, Lecturer) in determining eligibility for these awards. Rather, in all cases, award-holders are expected to be established scholars with a significant track record of publication.

Purpose: The purpose of these awards is to give an opportunity for extended research leave to a small number of the most outstanding established scholars to enable them to concentrate on a significant research programme, while freed from normal teaching and administrative commitments. Emphasis is also placed by the Academy and the Foundation on the importance of award-holders communicating their plans and results to a broad audience.

Scheme's website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

EPSRC Fellowship

Funding: No funding limit is specified and the fellowship can cover up to 100% time of the applicant, travel and subsistence, staff costs, visiting researchers, equipment, consumables, access to facilities and public communication training.

Duration: Up to 5 years (postdocs only 3 years).

Timetable: There are no official deadlines. Applications are assessed twice per year.

Eligibility: For established and non-established staff. EPSRC distinguishes between postdoctoral, early career and established career fellowships. Person specifications for each level can be found here based on attributes of research excellence, setting the research agenda, strategic vision, profile and influence, inspirational team leader, communication and engagement skills.

Purpose: A Fellowship is a personal award, designed to provide the recipient with the necessary support to establish or further develop themselves as a leader of the future. This type of award enables the researcher to devote most of her/his time to a programme of activities to deliver their proposed research vision. Engineering and physical sciences and cognate social sciences; EPSRC identifies priority areas for its fellowships.

Number of Fellowships: around 40 across the whole engineering and physical sciences portfolio of EPSRC.

Scheme's Website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

International Social Research Foundation Mid-career Fellowship

Funding: A maximum of £70,000 (from January 2020) to buy-out the cost of all teaching and associated administration in the applicant’s home institution. Within that sum, reasonable support for research expenses may be considered on a matched-funding basis with the host Institution.

Duration: Up to 12 months.

Timetable: Competitions generally launch in January of even-numbered years, with a mid-February deadline for applications.

Eligibility: Scholars from within Europe are eligible to apply. Applicants will normally hold a salaried position at an Institution of Higher Education and Research. Candidates should be 10 years or more from the year of their PhD award.

Purpose: The awards are intended as providing full relief from all teaching duties and all associated academic administration for a period of (up to) one year; applications may be made by those whose sole or principal post is a part-time equivalent.

Scheme's website

Contact Elizabeth Penner for more information.

Leverhulme Research Fellowships

Funding: The maximum value of a Fellowship is £60,000. 

Duration: Between 3-24 months (to be taken up between 1 June of the following year and 1 May of the year after).

Timetable: The deadline for this call is early November of each year.

Eligibility: Eligible are experienced researchers with an established track record in their research area and particularly those prevented by routine duties from undertaking or completing an original piece of research.

Purpose: For experienced researchers in any discipline, to complete a piece of research.

Scheme's website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

Leverhulme Trust Major Research Fellowships

Funding: Replacement salary costs for the duration of the Fellowship.

Duration: The duration of a Fellowship is for two or three years, to start at the beginning of the academic year following receipt of the offer letter.

Timetable: The closing date falls in May each year and the Trust will report results to applicants by the end of December in the same year.

Eligibility: Applicants must be employed by a UK university or other institution of higher education in the UK. They should be able to demonstrate scholarship at the highest level, but they need not already be of professorial standing. Candidates should state explicitly what the proposed outcomes of their research will be.

Purpose: For well-established, distinguished researchers in the humanities and social sciences to complete a piece of original research Fellowships are particularly aimed at those who are or have been prevented by routine duties from completing a programme of original research.

Scheme's website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

Marie Sklodowska-Curie Individual Fellowships

More information on MSCA Fellowships 

Contact Elizabeth Penner for more information.

Wellcome Career Development Awards

Funding: Salary (if required) and the resources needed for the research programme

Duration: 8 years.

Timetable: Calls are twice a year with November and March deadlines.

Eligibility: Open to mid-career researchers who are ready to lead a substantial and innovative research programme.  Eligibility is based on already having completed one or two substantial periods of resesarch after your initial training and have made important contributions to your area of research.   Applications must have sponsorship from an eligible host organisation (UK, Republic of Ireland, or low-or middle income country - appart from India and mainland China).  Those who hold permanent, open-ended or long-term rolling contracts within the past three years are not eligible to apply.

Purpose: This scheme provides funding for mid-career researchers from any discipline who have the potential to be international research leaders. They will develop their research capabilities, drive innovative programmes of work and deliver significant shifts in understanding that could improve human life, health and wellbeing.

Scheme's website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.

Wellcome Discovery Awards

Funding: Resources needed for the research programme

Duration: 8 years.

Timetable: Calls are twice a year with November and March deadlines.

Eligibility: Open to researchers who want to pursue bold and creative research ideas. The lead applicant will have international standing as a research leader in their field, experience of leading innovative and creative research, and a track record of managing and training others.  Applications must be based at an eligible host organisation (UK, Republic of Ireland, or low-or middle income country - appart from India and mainland China).  Salary costs must be paid by the host organisation. 

Purpose: This scheme provides funding for established researchers and teams from any discipline who want to pursue bold and creative research ideas to deliver significant shifts in understanding that could improve human life, health and wellbeing.

Scheme website

Contact Anna Cieslik for more information.