British Council

Early-career researchers from higher education and research institutions can now apply for the Early Career Fellowships. This scheme is under the International Science Partnerships Fund (ISPF), managed by the Department for Science, Innovation, and Technology in the UK. It awards fellows, including those traveling with dependents, opportunities to conduct research in UK institutions and advance their careers.

About the Scheme

The ISPF Early Career Fellowships scheme will enable early-career researchers to collaborate internationally.  They can gain access to new research environments, facilities, knowledge, and expertise... The scheme supports three fellows per participating UK institution to conduct research related to the four overarching themes of the ISPF.

  • Resilient planet – leading the green industrial revolution to protect the planet.
  • Healthy people, animals and plants – researching and innovating for secure and healthy populations.
  • Transformative technologies – developing responsible technologies to secure our place in tomorrow’s world.
  • Tomorrow’s talent – nurturing talent to drive inclusion, research and innovation.

Why you should apply

In addition to the opportunities of conducting research at UK institutions to develop your career, the scheme provides:

  • minimum £27,979 bursary payment plus relevant London weighting if applicable.*
  • £10,000 per 12 months (pro rata for shorter fellowships) for research-related expenses.
  • other allowable costs, such as: IELTS exam fee if applicable (for fellows without a valid Test of English); Return economy-class travel from home country to the UK; Visa and insurance / NHS surcharge costs; Ad hoc costs (heavy baggage allowance, etc.)

* This would be pro rata for fellowships shorter than 12 months. Where applicable, accompanying child allowance for fellows consistent with UK visa requirements.[1] These rates are decided by the Home Office. 

[1] Further detail on request. For reference, fellow accompanied by their children should receive £680 p/month for each dependent underaged child. This amount increases to £845 p/month for institutions located in London. Candidates travelling with underage dependants will be subject to visa authorisations which are beyond British Council’s area.

Who can apply

The application for ISPF Early Career Fellowships scheme is now open for early career researchers from the eligible countries/territories who:

  • have a proven background or interest in the proposed research area,
  • demonstrate passions and plans to engage with other early career researchers from the home countries/territories,
  • have passion for contributing to capacity-building and socio-economic advancement after the scheme,
  • meet the English language requirement of the UK HEI.

How to apply

Please apply directly to the participating institutions and review the application requirements on the website of each institution. You can make more than one application, but you will need to apply through each institution separately.

For Vietnamese candidates, University of Kent will offer a unique opportunity for three highly motivated individuals, who have expertise in analytics or in biosciences, to engage in cutting-edge research under the mentorship of leading experts in one of the three following research areas:

  1. Flood resilience
  2. Sustainable transport
  3. Crop resilience

About the International Science Partnerships Fund

The International Science Partnerships Fund is designed to enable potential and foster prosperity. It puts research and innovation at the heart of our international relationships, supporting UK researchers and innovators to work with peers around the world on the major themes of our time: planet, health, tech, and talent. The fund is managed by the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology and delivered by a consortium of the UK’s leading research and innovation bodies, which includes: UK Research and Innovation (comprising the 7 research councils, Innovate UK and Research England), the UK Academies, the British Council, the Met Office, the National Physical Laboratory, the UK Atomic Energy Authority, and Universities UK International.

Equality, diversity and inclusion

British Council are committed to equality, diversity, and inclusion, and to continuing to attract and nurture talented people from the widest pool to remain internationally competitive in research and innovation. We believe that everyone has a right to be treated with dignity and respect, and to be provided with equal opportunities to flourish and succeed. This includes avoidance of bias due to disability, gender reassignment, marriage or civil partnership status, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation, sex (gender), and age.

Early Career Fellowships are specifically designed to widen participation and to support the careers of researchers whose backgrounds are underrepresented in their research field.  

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