skip to content

Cambridge Public Policy SRI


Funding Resources

EPSRC has a blog called PM (Portfolio Manager) Perspectives, where they provide some useful guidance for new researchers:

Getting started with the Peer Review Process: and Writing your case for support:

The mentor and the named reviewer will be expected to provide feedback on the full proposal prior to submission to ESRC. This will be coordinated by the School Research Facilitator.

If you have any questions, then please write to


Research England and the Office for Students have announced the Student Engagement in Knowledge Exchange - Demonstrating what works for students call.

The funders are seeking project proposals to demonstrate benefits to students through their involvement in knowledge exchange (KE) activities. Projects should provide evidence of the effectiveness and impact to the student as well as the external partner, and exemplars of good practice, which can provide transferable insights across the HE sector. The funders are making up to £10 million available for this scheme. A minimum of £250k and a maximum of £1 million is available for the successful projects, which can run for up to two years. Bids requesting the full amount are expected to involve collaborations across at least two higher education providers.

The funders expect co-investment to be provided by the higher education providers and external partners involved in the bid in order to demonstrate evidence of commitment to the project, and to risk-sharing, alongside any OfS and RE funding.


Institutions may be involved in up to two bids and act as the lead on only one of those bids. Therefore, this call will be managed according to the University's restricted calls policy.

To take part in the internal selection process please submit the attached internal selection form together with a support letter from the Head of the Department / Centre / Institute that will hold the grant, confirming their support for the project and agreement to host the grant to RESEARCHSTRATEGY@ADMIN.CAM.AC.UK by 1ST NOVEMBER 2019.

Funder deadline: 17.00, 13 December 2019.

If you have any queries please don't hesitate to contact us at

Restricted call: ESRC New Investigator Grants

The ESRC have announced their New Investigators scheme. The call is open to high-quality candidates who have a maximum of four years’ postdoctoral experience. Proposals are welcome in any topic which falls within ESRC’s remit, including projects at the “interface with the wider sciences”, provided that social sciences accounts for at least 50% of the proposed research. The ESRC will award grants of between £100-300K (covered at 80%fEC). Awards will be for up to five years, though they will be typically three years in duration, with a special case being made for the need for five years’ worth of funding. For full details please see the call specification.

This call has a rolling deadline, and applications will be reviewed 3 times / year: in ESRC Panel meetings in March, July and November each year. Roughly 35 awards will be made per year.

Internal Selection process:

The ESRC expect the University to run an internal selection process to ensure that we submit only bids from outstanding individuals with the potential to become the research leaders of the future. The University can submit only a limited number of applications. To meet these requirements, this call will be overseen by a cross-school Committee, as decided by University’s Research Policy Committee.

There will be 3 internal calls every year. Only applicants whose proposals have been approved and selected through the internal selection process will be allowed to proceed with submission of their applications to ESRC.

The applicants are required to submit the following documents to by Monday, 14th October 2019 (17:00):

·         The attached internal selection form

·         A letter of support from your Head of Department. This letter is very important to the success of the application as it is needed to confirm the details of the departmental support and the applicant’s eligibility.

·         The letter must also specify a department/faculty based mentor, and a reviewer, both of whom have agreed to provide feedback on the full proposal, should the applicant be selected to proceed. The reviewer may be from within or outside the applicant’s department/faculty. Please note that naming a reviewer is an internal requirement, and the reviewer will not be named on the full application to the ESRC.

The mentor and the named reviewer will be expected to provide feedback on the full proposal prior to submission to ESRC. This will be coordinated by the School Research Facilitator.

UK Parliament commissioning research

The UK Parliament has a Select Committee Engagement Team.  They are looking to commission an organisation or individual to write an evidence-based research paper exploring the barriers that exist which might stop potential participants from participating in select committee engagement events/activity.  They will also be commissioning an organisation or an individual to carry out research into the opportunities that exist to use and adopt digital tools and technologies to enhance and improve the consultative engagement events and activities that are delivered.

Both research briefs are attached here and here.  If you would like more information or have queries, please contact Naomi Jurczak, Select Committee Engagement Manager on 020 7219 5521 or

The deadline for proposals is 20th September 2019. 

The University of Cambridge has been awarded another round of funding for an Impact Acceleration Account(IAA) from the Economic Social Research Council (ESRC) to run from 2019-2023.

The ESRC IAA will be used to support a number of activities focused on generating impact from social science research, some of which include: 

  • Dedicated funding for social science impact;
  • One-to-one impact support to researchers;
  • Events, training, and online materials for devising impact plans; Commercialisation and technology transfer support from Cambridge Enterprise;
  • Policy engagement through The Centre for Science and Policy;
  • Enterprise training for researchers looking to commercialise their research, provided by the Entrepreneurship Centre at Judge Business School and the Maxwell Centre Impulse Programme, and;
  • Recognition for impact and public engagement through the annual Vice Chancellor’s Awards for Impact and Public Engagement.

The Social Science Impact Fund will be launched soon with the deadline for applications on 30th September 2019. Please look out for further information on this in the coming days.

For more information contact Dr Tina Basi, Social Science Impact Facilitator or go to

British Academy has opened a new funding scheme 60 Visiting Fellowships. Awards of up to £33,000.

As you know, the School of Arts and Humanities and the School of Humanities and Social Sciences are in the process of developing an international research strategy. One of the possible avenues of international collaboration is through the development of research relations with individuals based at overseas institutions. The British Academy has opened a new funding scheme meant to facilitate such interactions.  The recently advertised Visiting Fellowships allow academics based in any country overseas to be based at Cambridge for up to six months. The expected outcome of the Fellowships is a development new research collaborations and/or deepening of existing partnerships.

Please see more information on the scheme below – it is a good starting point for reflection on the internationalization of Faculty/Department research strategies.

The School Research Facilitators Team would be happy to support applications to this scheme: we can discuss research ideas, help identify potential collaborators and provide feedback on proposals.

BA expect to award approximately 60 Visiting Fellowships through this current call. Awards of up to £33,000 are available, to include a contribution of 50% of the total award to enable the UK institution to host the Visiting Fellow.

Suitable candidates for the Visiting Fellowships include researchers active within any discipline within the humanities or the social sciences. They may be talented early career scholars who have only recently obtained their PhD degree; mid-career researchers; or established academics with a considerable track-record of achievement.

Candidates need not necessarily apply to develop collaboration with UK scholars active within the same discipline. These Fellowships are open also to applicants who wish to work with UK colleagues in other areas or disciplines (including scholars within the natural, medical, or engineering sciences), in a cross- or inter-disciplinary way.

More information can be found on the scheme’s website:

If you have any questions, please you can contact the Academy at +44 (0) 20 7969 5220 or

Horizon 2020

The full programme can be found here:

Thematic calls

The final Work Programme 2018-2020 is not yet available, but links to the scoping papers and overarching document for the call can be found at

Eight issues are highlighted in the overarching document  "as deserving serious consideration under this programming cycles as they are expected to impact on society in the coming decades": 

  • Hyper-connectivity and big data driving change and innovation

  • Falling cost of energy fostering innovation (e.g. separation and recycling of raw materials, drinking water from the sea)

  • Migration and demographic dynamics challenging European societies

  • Pressure on health systems and health inequalities

  • Climate change, oceans and space

  • Primary sector innovation being key for sustainability and well-being

  • Biotechnology as the next wave of disrupting technologies

  • Increasing instability as a new reality for societies

ESRC Research Centres Competition

The Economic and Social Research Council invites applications for its research centres competition. This supports innovative new research addressing any major social and economic topic. Research centre funding is aimed at experienced research leaders who require longer-term or extended support for research groups, inter-institutional research networks, project-linked programmes, medium-to-large surveys, other infrastructure or methodological developments, or any related larger-scale projects. Funding should contribute to high-impact investments over the longer term. The centres must:

•provide scientifically coherent programmes of research aimed at driving forward innovations in social science theory, the development and application of novel research methods, data sources and practical application;

•be international or national centres of excellence for social science research, where researchers can collaborate on long-term projects;

•make significant contributions to scientific, economic or social impact;

•involve potential users of research and take advantage of international collaborative or comparative opportunities;

•support active career development programmes aimed at building research capacity.

Researchers at eligible UK research organisations may apply as the lead applicant.

The total budget is worth up to £30 million and funding covers a period of up to five years. Four grants, worth between £2m and £8m each at 80 per cent full economic cost, are available.

Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) - second call

Research Councils UK

The Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a £1.5 billion fund announced by the UK Government to support cutting-edge research that addresses the challenges faced by developing countries through:

  • challenge-led disciplinary and interdisciplinary research

  • strengthening capacity for research and innovation within both the UK and developing countries

  • providing an agile response to emergencies where there is an urgent research need.

The Research Councils UK invite applications for their Global Challenges Research Fund – second call. This aims to establish a cohort of large-scale Global Challenges Interdisciplinary Research Hubs, which will be expected to deliver integrated and innovative international research programmes meeting the aims of Official Development Assistance.

UK researchers and researchers from the DAC list countries in collaboration may apply. Overseas research organisations may not apply as the lead organisation.

Deadline: Various - see GCRF website at and the the sites of individual research councils. 


Standard Grants

Grants range from £200,000 to £2M at 100% full economic costs (fEC) for up to five years. Up to 30% of funding can be used toward international collaborators. Applications may be submitted at any time. The majority of decisions are announced within 26 weeks of submission.  

Eligibility: Applications can be for ‘blue sky’, strategic or applied research, and the ESRC is keen to encourage fresh ideas from new researchers. At the time of application, applicant PIs must either have a contract of employment with their research organisation in place for the duration of the award, or an assurance from the submitting institution that, if the proposal is successful, a contract of employment will be given that covers the period of the award plus an additional 3-6 months. This scheme lends itself for un-established researchers particularly to apply as co-investigator.

Deadline: None

For more information see

Research Grants

The Economic and Social Research Council invites proposals for its research grants. These support individuals or teams to conduct standard research projects, large-scale surveys and other infrastructure projects or methodological developments in any area within the council’s remit. Proposals can be for basic, applied or strategic research.

All UK HEIs, research institutes, and independent research organisations approved by the council may apply. Proposals for two or more linked projects may be submitted, and research proposals may be submitted jointly by more than one applicant but require one of the individuals to be regarded as the principal investigator. Collaborations between UK researchers and those in other countries are encouraged. Furthermore, business, third sector or government bodies based in the UK can also be included on the proposal.

Research awards can be made for up to five years. Grants range in size from £350,000 to £1 million at 100 per cent full economic cost.

Deadline: None

For more information see

For further ESRC opportunities see the list here:

AHRC/NSF lead agency agreement

The Arts and Humanities Foundation, in collaboration with the Social, Behavioural and Economic Sciences Directorate of the US National Science Foundation, invites applications for funding under their lead agency agreement. This supports interdisciplinary research of mutual interest and aims to facilitate the peer-review and joint funding of US-UK collaborative research.

Transnational teams of UK and US-based researchers are invited to apply. The UK principal investigator must meet the AHRC’s current eligibility for standard and early career AHRC research grant proposals. The US principal investigator must be eligible for funding from the NSF. For the standard route, the principal investigator must be resident in the UK and an academic employee at the lecturer or equivalent level at an eligible organisation, which may be a higher education institution, a research institute funded by a research council or an independent research organisation.

For the early-career route, researchers must have either received their PhD or equivalent professional training within the last eight years, or be within six years of their first academic appointment.

Projects costing £50,000 to £1,000,000 for the standard route or £50,000 to £250,000 for the early-career route will be funded by the AHRC at 80 per cent full economic costing. Funding for the US part of the project must be in accordance with NSF’s normal funding rules for unsolicited proposals.

Deadline None

For more information see 

AHRC Research Grants - Standard route

The Arts and Humanities Research Council, under its research grants scheme, invites applications for its standard route grants. These support research projects by enabling individual researchers to collaborate with, and bring benefits to, other individuals and organisations through the conduct of research related to the arts and humanities. Grants aim to achieve the following:

•assist researchers in all areas of the arts and humanities;

•support projects that lead to significant advances in creativity, insights, knowledge and understanding, of interest and value in the research community and in wider contexts;

•enable arts and humanities researchers to pursue and bring to completion in due time collaborative research projects that require leadership from more than one single scholar;

•enable arts and humanities researchers to establish or enhance effective working relationships with fellow researchers;

•provide opportunities for less experienced researchers to develop their expertise and careers by working with senior researchers and by leading projects themselves;

•maximise the value of research outcomes by promoting their communication dissemination with individuals and organisations outside academia and, where appropriate, to facilitate the knowledge transfer of those outcomes to both the research community and other contexts where they will make a difference.

Applications must include one UK principal investigator who is resident in the UK and actively engaged in postdoctoral research and be of postdoctoral standing. International co-investigators can be included.

Standard route grants are worth between £50,000 and £1 million for up to five years.

Deadline None

For more information see 

For further AHRC opportunities see the list here:

Wellcome Trust

Investigator awards in humanities and social science

The Wellcome Trust invites applications for its investigator awards in humanities and social science. These support researchers in established posts at all career stages working on important questions of relevance to health.

Applicants must be based in the UK, Republic of Ireland or a low or middle-income country and should have an established academic post at a HEI or research institution. Candidates should have a statement of commitment from a senior member of the institution and a relevant research project.

Awards range from under £300,000 to £1 million each over a maximum period of five years. Funding may cover research expenses, research or teaching buy-out leave and conference and meeting costs.

For University of Cambridge applicants this call requires a statement of commitment signed by the Head of School in which the applicant is based. If an application is supported by 2 departments from separate Schools the letter can be signed jointly by the heads of both Schools.

Deadline: 9 January 2018

For more information see

Collaborative awards in humanities and social science

The Wellcome Trust invites applications for its collaborative awards in humanities and social science. These support teams who are tackling major health-related questions in the humanities and social sciences that require a collaborative approach. They are intended to promote the development of new ideas and bring disciplines together to speed the pace of discovery.

Teams from the UK, Republic of Ireland or low- and middle-income countries should normally consist of two to six principal applicants, each of whom has a strong track record in their area of research relative to career stage. Interdisciplinary research collaborations which combine the humanities and social sciences with biomedical science or product development are encouraged. Collaborations may be international and may exist across a university or spanning a number of institutions.

Awards are normally worth between £1 million and £1.5m each over a maximum period of five years. Funding may cover research expenses, including research assistance or PhDs, research or teaching buy-out leave and conference and meeting costs.

Deadline: 9 January 2018

For more information see

Small grants in humanities and social science

The Wellcome Trust invites applications for its small grants in humanities and social science. This supports programmes of activities that enable researchers to establish and develop networks, explore new areas of research and increase the impact of their work. Support can include research expenses for small-scale projects, personal support or salary expenses or conference and meeting costs.

Social science researchers may apply, through a university or other research organisation based in the UK, Republic of Ireland or a low- or middle-income country.

Grants are usually worth up to £30,000 and researchers from low- and middle- income countries working in high-income countries can request up to £20 per day for extra costs.

Deadline: None

For more information see


Leverhulme Research Project Grants

The aim of these awards is to provide financial support for innovative and original research projects of high quality and potential. The grants provide support for the salaries of research staff engaged on the project, plus associated costs directly related to the research proposed, and the award is paid directly to the institution at which the applicant is employed.  

Funding is up to £500,000 for up to five years (average is around 150k for three years).

There are no deadlines for this scheme. The application process has an outline phase (turnaround usually within three months) and a full application stage – no alterations to the project outline are allowed.

Favoured proposals will:  

  • reflect the personal vision of the applicant;

  • demonstrate compelling competence in the research design;

  • surmount traditional disciplinary academic boundaries;

  • involve a willingness to take appropriate degrees of risk in setting research objectives.   

Eligibility: The Trust does not fund research which is of direct relevance to clinicians, medical professionals and/or the pharmaceutical industry. 

Applicants are strongly advised to consult the statement on the Leverhulme Trust’s approach to grant-making.

For more information see



Society in Science, CH

Branco Weiss fellowship

Society in Science invites applications for the Branco Weiss fellowship. This supports young researchers conducting new and innovative research focusing on social, cultural, political or economic issues.

The fellowship consists of a two-year pioneer phase and a subsequent three-year exploitation phase, with a review after the second year.

Applicants must have completed their PhD by the application deadline and have a strong record of achievement in their chosen field. Applicant must have been born after 1 January 1984.

Up to ten fellowships, worth CHF 100,000 per year each, are available for a period of five years. The programme aims to award up to 10 fellowships each year. Funding may cover salary, equipment, travel costs, consumables, personnel and more.

Deadline: 15 January 2018

For more information see:


UKRI innovation fellowships – AHRC leadership fellows highlight notice

Research Councils UK, under the UK Research and Innovation and through the National Productivity Investment Fund, invites applications for its innovation fellowships through the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s leadership fellows scheme highlight notice. These enable early-career researchers to carry out research in relevant focus topics, in order to support the research leaders of the future and enable them to undertake major new innovation orientated, intellectual endeavours. Fellowships support the delivery of the government’s industrial strategy by allowing early-career researchers to explore interdisciplinary solutions, which address focused sectoral needs, to the economic benefit of the UK. Applications must fall into one of the following focus areas:

•creative and digital economy innovation leadership fellows for research programme and leadership activities in partnership with creative or digital economy organisations;

•interdisciplinary interface innovation leadership fellows for innovative research and research leadership development activities combining arts and humanities with other fields of study;

•Rutherford Fund fellows for non-UK nationals carrying out activities related to one of the categories above.

Postdoctoral researchers, who are within eight years of the award of their PhD or equivalent or within six years of their fist academic appointment, may apply. Applicants must hold a contract at an eligible UK research organisation for the duration of the fellowship. Non-UK nationals are particularly encouraged to apply for the Rutherford Fund fellowships and they need not to be based in the UK at the time of the application. Collaborations between academia and non-academic organisations are encouraged.

Fellowships are worth between £50,000 and £250,000 each at full economic costing over six to 24 months, or over one to two years if taken part-time. Fellows will be eligible to apply for a further fellowship of up to two years in duration.

Deadline 31 May 2018

For more information see:

AHRC Fellowships

Leadership Fellows Scheme - Early-Career Researchers

The Arts and Humanities Research Council invites applications from early-career researchers for its leadership fellows scheme. This enables early-career researchers to develop their leadership experience and capabilities as they establish themselves and develop beyond doctoral and postdoctoral work, and to produce innovative research that moves significantly beyond doctoral projects.

Principal investigators must be within eight years of the award of their PhD or equivalent professional training, or be within six years of their first academic appointment. They should have the commitment and support of their host organisation, which may be a UK higher education institution, a research institute or an independent research organisation, as well as a committed institution-based mentor. Co-investigators are not permitted, however, research assistants of a postdoctoral standing may be included in applications.

Proposals should have a full economic cost of between £50,000 and £250,000. Fellowships cover up to 80 per cent fEC and are awarded for 24 months for full-time researchers. Applicants on part-time contracts are awarded support pro-rata. The AHRC will make a contribution to the cost of the fellow’s mentoring.

For more information see:


Leadership Fellows Scheme - Standard Route

The Arts and Humanities Research Council invites applications for the standard route of its leadership fellows scheme. This enables researchers to develop their capabilities as leaders, to carry out work with a potential to generate a transformative impact on their discipline, and to develop and undertake leadership activities that are connected to their research.

Principal investigators must be actively engaged in postdoctoral research and either have a doctorate degree or equivalent experience or training. They should have at least two years of postdoctoral experience in an academic or research environment or have an equivalent level of professional or practice experience of direct relevance to the proposed research. Eligible host institutions include UK higher education institutions, research institutes and independent research organisations. Co-investigators are not eligible under this scheme.

Grants are worth between £50,000 and £250,000 for a period of six to 18 months.

Deadline: None

For more information see:

AHRC Research networking

The Arts and Humanities Research Council invites applications for its research networking scheme. This encourages discussion and exchange of ideas on a specified thematic area, issue or problem through facilitating a short-term series of workshops, seminars, networking activities or other events. The aims of the scheme are:

•to support collaboration and the exchange of ideas across boundaries, primarily between researchers in the arts and humanities, as well as with colleagues in other disciplines and other stakeholders in order to explore a particular theme, issue or problem;

•to enable groups of researchers and other stakeholders to explore ideas which could lead to tangible projects and maximise opportunities for advances in creativity, insights, knowledge and understanding in the area to be explored, with results of value both to the arts and humanities research community and to wider contexts where they can make a difference;

•to encourage and enable researchers within the research community to involve new researchers and research students, as well as people or organisations from outside the academic and research community, in the discussion and development of ideas;

•to foster international collaboration and the development of strong academic links with overseas researchers, in order to develop understanding through engagement with different cultures and parts of the world, and to enhance research standards;

•to provide a framework for the AHRC to learn of emerging areas of intellectual urgency and potential strategic importance, both within the UK and internationally, identifying key research challenges by building new collaborations as well as strengthening existing ones.

Proposals need to be led by a UK principal investigator. Principal investigators must come from a discipline in the arts and humanities. Only one co-investigator is permissible. International co-investigators are eligible under this scheme.

Grants are worth up to £30,000 each over two years. An additional £15,000 full economic cost may be provided to cover the costs of any international participants or activities in addition to the scheme limit.

Deadline: None

For more information see

Royal Society

Smaller scientific meetings

The Royal Society invites proposals for smaller scientific meetings. Funding enables scientists from around the world to present and discuss new research in all areas of science at small meetings. Two types of meeting may be held:

•fast-track discussion meeting – intended to allow two-day meetings on timely topics to take place, with a shorter lead time of approximately six months from approval to meeting date;

•Science+ meeting – two-day meeting held at the Royal Society, London bringing together pure science and an additional element formed from areas which build on or function alongside science, such as policy or public health.

Applicants must provide the scientific theme and develop the content of the meeting. In addition they must advise on suitable routes for publicising the meeting and dealing with interest from the media.

The Royal Society will promote the meeting to the relevant communities and to the media and provide logistical support, materials for the meeting and full on-site support throughout. Funding contributes to travel and expenses for organisers, speakers and chairs, and the society provides the venue, facilities and catering.

Meetings are to be held from November 2017 to March 2018. Applicants may express a preferred month for their meeting on the proposal form however final allocation of dates is subject to availability at the Royal Society.

Deadline: None

Fore more information see

For more information see

Small grants

Wellcome Trust

The Wellcome Trust invites applications for its small grants. These support small scale humanities and social science research projects, scoping exercises or meetings in any area of human or animal health, and projects related to research resources.

Applicants must be based in, or intend to travel to, the UK, Ireland or a low- and middle-income country.

Grants are normally worth up to £5,000. Applications for international meetings or to attract international speakers may receive up to £10,000. Funding covers research expenses, transport, accommodation, subsistence and photocopying costs.

Deadline: None

For more information see:

Latest news


12 March 2019

The Bennett Institute is recruiting for Visiting Fellow from within the University for the academic year 2019/20.

Post-Brexit Options for the UK: New Legal Analysis

22 November 2018

On 16 November 2018 the Cambridge Public Policy SRI (Strategic Research Initiative) and the CBR, the Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge, held a conference at Peterhouse College in Cambridge on Brexit with the aim of encouraging interdisciplinary discussion amongst academics and further research on the implications of the UK leaving the EU for public policy.

Britain’s Broken Economic Model and Why Brexit isn’t the Cure

11 November 2018

Simon Deakin, Director of the Centre for Business Research and Professor of Law at the University of Cambridge, tells the Cambridge Public Policy SRI (Strategic Research Initiative) why Brexit isn’t the cure for Britain’s broken economic model.