Research funding

There are many organisations offering funding for various kinds of research activity, aimed at philosophers at different stages of their career. There is funding available for, for example, postdoctoral fellowships, short periods of research leave, overseas travel, running a conference, mid-career and senior research fellowships, and major research projects.

Below we list the major sources of funding, and give a brief description of the kinds of funding offered. (Please note that the list may not be fully up-to-date, and deadlines are subject to change.)

Arts & Humanities Research Council

Please note that the AHRC no longer operates deadlines for applications. However, you should normally apply at least 9 months before the intended start date of your project.

  • Fellowships Scheme:

    Pays for a proportion of your time (up to 100%) over a period of 3-9 months (at 80% of full economic costing or ’fEC’), up to a maximum of £120k. The scheme also has an ’early career’ route.

  • Research Grants Scheme (standard route):

    Pays 80% of fEC, between £20,000 and £1m, for projects of up to 5 years. Can cover things like teaching buy-out, travel, conferences/ workshops, postdocs and PhD students.

  • Research Grants Scheme (early career researchers):

    Pays 80% of fEC, between £20,000 and £200,000 for projects of up to 5 years. ’Early career’ means (a) you haven’t been a Principal Investigator on a previous AHRC-funded project, and (b) you’re within 8 years of your PhD or within 6 years of first academic appointment.

  • Research Networking Scheme

    Up to £30,000 (with up to £15k of additional funding for international participants) for a series of workshops and other collaborative events. The project should aim to ’stimulate new debate across boundaries, for example, disciplinary, conceptual, theoretical, methodological, and/or international. Proposals should explore new areas, be multi-institutional and can include creative or innovative approaches or entrepreneurship’.

British Academy

  • Small Research Grant:

    Up to £7,500 ’to facilitate initial project planning and development; to support the direct costs of research; and to enable the advancement of research through workshops, or visits by or to partner scholars’. The grant is for ’a clearly defined, discrete piece of research, which will have an identifiable outcome’. Not fEC; mainly designed to cover the cost of travel, workshops etc. Two deadlines per year.

  • Research Development Award (BARDA):

    £15,000-£150,000 in total, for a project lasting up to 3 years. Paid at 80% of fEC.

  • Overseas Conference Grant:

    Fixed-rate grant of up to £900 to present a paper at an overseas conference. Two rounds per year. You must be able to provide an abstract of your paper. If your application succeeds, you aren’t allowed to apply again the following year.

  • Conference Support:

    Up to £20,000 to fund organising a conference. Two rounds per year.

  • Visiting Scholar Scheme:

    Funding for overseas early-career researchers to visit for 2 to 6 months. Pays costs of up to £7,500.

Leverhulme Trust

  • Research Fellowships:

    For ’experienced researchers’ for a period of 3-24 months. Up to £30,000 to cover teaching buy-out and research costs (not fEC). Application deadline normally November for the following academic year.

  • Study Abroad Fellowships:

    As above, but including travel and maintenances costs. Maximum £21,000.

  • Research Project Grants:

    Up to £250,000 for a project led by an ’experienced researcher’, to cover postdocs, research students, teaching buy-out, secretarial support, conference attendance etc. (not fEC).

  • Academic Collaboration: International Networks:

    Funding for workshops etc. involving named international participants for up to 3 years, including up to £20,000 per year salary costs for a ’facilitator’.

  • Visiting Professorships:

    Funding for an ’internationally distinguished academic’ from overseas to visit for 3-10 months, paying for travel and maintenance.

  • Philip Leverhulme Prize:

    £70,000 to ’outstanding’ researchers under the age of 36 on the application deadline, to pay for up to 2 years’ research leave and/or research expenses. Awarded in Philosophy every 2 years.

The Mind Association

  • Research Fellowships:

    A block of money for your Department to pay for replacement teaching and administration to cover a term’s or semester’s sabbatical.

  • Conference grants:

    Up to £2000 for a Major Grant, and up to £600 for a Minor Grant, to fund a UK conference. The application deadline is several months before the start of the conference.

The Aristotelian Society

  • Conference grants:

    Up to £1000 to fund a UK conference. Deadlines are normally March and September.

The Analysis Trust

  • Conference grants:

    Funding for organisers of conferences that are ’analytic in spirit’ to subsidise up to 50% of conference fee and accommodation costs for graduate students. Deadlines are normally January, April and October.