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Postdoctoral Funding Opportunities

1. ESRC/NPIF Scholarships

The University of Warwick is one of 26 UK universities receiving funding from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF) to expand opportunities and build the capability and capacity of social science doctoral students and early career researchers to engage and collaborate with UK business. As part of this programme, we are funding 2 distinct Postdoctoral Innovation Fellowships:

  1. ESRC/NPIF Postdoctoral Innovation Fellowship Scoping Project: How can social science research help business?

This Fellowship offers an opportunity to undertake a bespoke project looking into the (real and perceived) barriers to knowledge-exchange between social sciences researchers and UK business and how these can be overcome.

  1. ESRC/NPIF Postdoctoral Innovation Fellowship: Business Collaboration:
    This Fellowship is aimed at supporting students towards the end of their PhD to think about how their research could be applied to the needs and challenges of UK business and/or social enterprise organisations, and to develop proposals to put this into practice.

Projects can commence any time from 12 March 2021 and must be complete by 12 September 2021.

How to apply:

Full details and application materials are included in the respective attachments. Any queries can be directed to Carolyn Silvester via

Deadline for applications:

The deadline for applications to both schemes is 12noon on Friday 26 February 2021. 

2. EUTOPIA Post-Doctoral Fellowship Opportunity

Warwick is a founding member of the EUTOPIA alliance, a network of six European Universities committed to delivering open, innovative, and inclusive higher education in Europe. EUTOPIA has received funding from the European Commission for several projects.

The EUTOPIA Science and Innovation Fellowship Programme (EUTOPIA-SIF) will fund 76 two-year fellowships over 4 calls and offers outstanding early career researchers an opportunity to develop their independent research profile and undertake training to help establish an academic career.

The programme offers an opportunity to bring outstanding early-career researchers to Warwick, as well as being an excellent opportunity for our own early career researchers to travel to one of the EUTOPIA partners and take a significant step towards establishing themselves in an academic role.

How to apply:

For full details of the calls and how to apply see the EUTOPIA-SIF website. Further information is available in the Frequently Asked Questions page on the Warwick Institute of Advanced Study website, or by emailing the IAS.

Deadline for applications:

The first deadline for applications is the 11th January 2021 with this cohort expected to start in September 2021. Future calls will follow in the 2021/22, 2022/23 and 2023/24.

3. Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship (ECF) Competition 2021

Early Career Fellowships aim to provide career development opportunities for those who are at a relatively early stage of their academic careers, but who have a proven record of research. The expectation is that Fellows should undertake a significant piece of publishable work during their tenure, and that the Fellowships should lead to a more permanent academic position. Fellowships can be held at universities or at other institutions of higher education in the UK.

Sociology has an excellent track record in supporting successful candidates for this scheme and we are now inviting suitably qualified candidates to support in the latest scheme. Due to intense researcher interest, the Department will select a limited number of fellowship applications to support in the 2021 competition. These applications will be selected through a competitive internal selection process.

How to apply:

Applicants are encouraged to work on their proposal with their chosen mentor before submitting the application to the department.

The procedure for obtaining departmental support is as follows:

  • Expressions of interest in the scheme should be sent by email to Amy Clarke Amy dot Clarke at warwick dot ac dot uk by Wednesday 13 January 2021.
  • All expressions of interest should include the following materials:
    • A draft proposal in Word which addresses the 'Research and Publications' section of the Leverhulme Trust ECF application form in the word length permitted. Details of the application form are here.
    • An academic CV (2 pages maximum)
    • A forwarded email or a letter confirming support for your application from your chosen mentor in Sociology (who must be a permanent member of staff)
  • All submissions received by the deadline which meet these requirements will then be reviewed by members of the Department's Management Team. We expect the decision on supported applications, which will then receive application feedback and administrative support in the run up to the Leverhulme Trust deadline, to be communicated to candidates by mid-February 2021.

The criteria for selection will be:

  • Research track-record of nominee
  • Quality of proposed research to be conducted while at Sociology
  • Fit with the mentor and the strength of their support
  • Fit with broader aims of the Leverhulme competition

Find out more if you're eligible and other key information...

Deadline for applications:

The 2021 round will open in January 2021. The closing date for applications to the Leverhulme Trust is 25 February 2021.

4. ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme - Midlands Graduate School DTP

The Midlands Graduate School ESRC DTP has formally launched applications for this scheme and updated the Postdoctoral Fellowships webpage on the Midlands Graduate School DTP website. This contains the Postdoctoral Fellowship application form, alongside the Call Specification and FAQs document and outlines the steps that candidates need to take in order to apply:

The Postdoctoral Fellowship scheme is open to applicants who: 

  • Have completed or expected to complete their PhD at a research organisation that is part of a DTP or CDT (but they themselves do not have to have been funded through a DTP or CDT)
  • Have either been awarded a PhD by the submission deadline (23 March 2021) or have passed their viva voce with minor amendments by the application deadline of 23 March 2021 and have been awarded their PhD by the fellowship start date of 1 October 2021
  • Have no more than 12 months active postdoctoral experience since passing their viva voce (allowing for career breaks) by 23 March 2021

How to apply:

Any applicant queries in the first instance should be directed to relevant institution within the DTP to where the candidate is applying to hold the Fellowship

Deadline for applications:

The final application deadline to apply for Postdoctoral Fellowships is 16.00 on Monday 23 March 2021 – this is the national deadline set by the ESRC and applies across all 14 DTPs. Please note that there are further earlier internal deadlines depending on the institution to which the candidate is applying and these are detailed on the MGS website.