Our Researcher Development and Travel Grants are open to PhD students and early career scientists wishing to undertake an activity that supports their research career. The activities applied can be virtual or in-person. Examples include, but are not limited to, presenting work at conferences, developing new skills by attending training courses or developing networks by organising a scientific meeting.
Please see the “Who can apply?” section below for full details of new deadlines this year. Please contact us if you have any questions or doubts.
Technicians wishing to participate in an activity organised by someone else may be interested in our Technician Travel and Training Grant, which provides up to £1800 of support. Please note that members can only receive one grant from the RSC for a particular activity.
Our Grants for Carers and Accessibility Grants are also available to support those with caring responsibilities or who need additional assistance to participate in a professional development activity. Researcher Development and Travel Grant applicants may also apply for one of these grants if needed for their activity.
Who can apply?
In order to be eligible, you must meet the following criteria:
- You are an RSC member (of any level)
- You are one of the following: (1) a PhD student; (2) an academic researcher within 10 years of completion of a PhD (including postdoctoral researchers); (3) working in the industry within 10 years of leaving full-time education or; (4) a technician within 10 years of leaving full-time education.
(Restrictions exclude time for career breaks, parental leave, etc.)
- Your activity must start at least 2 months from the end of your month of application. For example, applications made in March can only be for activities starting 1 June or later. For 2023, please note the following deadlines based on the timings of your activity
|For activities that start in…||Your application must be submitted by…|
|June 2023||31 March 2023|
|July 2023||30 April 2023|
|August 2023||31 May 2023|
|September 2023||30 June 2023|
|October 2023||31 July 2023|
|November 2023||31 August 2023|
|December 2023||30 September 2023|
|Janurary 2024||31 October 2023|
|February/March 2024||30 November 2023*|
|April 2024||31 January 2024|
|May 2024||29 February 2024|
|June 2024||31 March 2024|
*Please note that this scheme will not be open in December.
Please ensure you read our guidance for applicants fully before you begin your application.
What can I request funding for?
You can apply for a grant of up to £500 towards an activity that develops your skills and experience as a researcher. Examples include but are not limited to:
- Knowledge e.g. conference participation
- Skills e.g. researcher development tools or projects, such as training courses
- Networking e.g. funding towards organising a scientific meeting or visiting a collaborator
We welcome applications for a broad range of activities and initiatives. The Additional Guidance document includes further information about eligible and ineligible expenses. If you would like to discuss a proposed activity before applying, please email us using the form below.
We also wish to caution applicants about the dangers of predatory conferences. For further information, please see the Additional Guidance document.
Important note about travel and in-person activities
We process applications on a monthly basis, so the deadline for each "round" is the last day of each month. We strongly recommend that you submit your application as soon as you can, ideally at least 12 weeks before the start of your activity, particularly if you need a grant decision before booking travel. Please note that whilst we usually complete the review of applications within 8 weeks of the month of submission, this cannot always be guaranteed. We also do not normally fund applications retrospectively.
How to submit a good application
Please ensure you carefully read our guidance for applicants and additional guidance documents before you apply. The assessment criteria below also provide details of what our reviewers will be looking for.
Your application should be clearly written, justified and costed. You should include information on the activity and where applicable an online link to it. In particular, you should explain why you wish to undertake the activity or training and how it will benefit your research career.
Your finances should be clear and well thought out. It should provide reviewers with a good understanding of your itinerary and why each expense is essential for your activity to occur. Where possible, you should include links to quotes or price comparison sites. If the cost of your activity exceeds the value of the Researcher Development and Travel Grant, you should explain how you intend to fund the remaining costs.
All applications will undergo an initial screening by staff. Applications will be rejected at this stage if:
- You do not meet our eligibility criteria (see above)
- Your activity is out of scope for this scheme
- Your application is incomplete
All remaining applications will be assessed according to the criteria below. We will fund as many of the strongest applications as we can.
|Benefit of participation to the applicant||
|Case for funding||
|Supervisor's support (where applicable)||
- Send us an email
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