This scheme is for outstanding scientists in the UK who are in the early stages of their research career and have the potential to become leaders in their field.
The applicant must:
have a PhD (note we will not consider applicants who have just submitted their PhD); be in the early stages of their research career (between 3 to 8 years of research experience since their PhD) by the closing date of the round
not hold a permanent post in a university or not-for-profit organization in the European Economic Area (EEA)
be a citizen of the EEA or a be a Swiss citizen (or have a relevant connection to the EEA or Switzerland)
The European Economic Area (EEA) consists of the European Union (including the UK) plus Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein.
Applicants should ensure that they meet all the eligibility requirements, which are explained in the scheme notes .
Value and tenure
The scheme provides funding to cover the applicant’s salary costs, estates costs and indirect costs. Under the full economic costing model, 80% of these costs will be met by the Royal Society. Research expenses (up to £13,000 for the first year and up to £11,000 annually thereafter) will also be provided.
Initially funding is provided for five years with the opportunity to apply for an extension of three additional years. The University Research Fellowship provides researchers with maximum flexibility and can be held part-time, and allows sabbaticals, secondments or international experience.
The basic salary requested should be at a level commensurate with the applicant’s skills, responsibilities, expertise and experience, up to a maximum of £37,555 per annum. An annual spine point increase of 3% may be applied to the salary.
No indexation should be applied to the salary, indirect and estates costs; the Society will apply an annual inflationary increase to these budget headings of successful awards. The level of inflation applied will be determined by HM Treasury’s GDP deflator. This will be reviewed on an annual basis and the value of awards amended in line with increases or decreases in the GDP deflator.
Applications are initially reviewed and then shortlisted by members of University Research Fellowship Selection Panels. Applicants are notified if they have reached the shortlisting stage by December. The shortlisted proposals are reviewed by three independent referees suggested by the panel members and successful applicants are shortlisted for interview. Applicants are informed of the result of this stage in February/March and interviews take place in early to mid April. The final decision is made at a meeting of the panel Chairs in April, and applicants are notified of the result in early May.
Please note that interviews for the fellowships are held at the Royal Society. Applicants are asked to keep April free. Only applicants that pass the other stages of assessment will be invited.
The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.