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Securing independent funding can be a key concern for postdocs, so this section highlights some places to look for different types of funding, from major research grants to public engagement seed funds.

There are also several funding schemes offered through the Postdoc Academy and Cambridge Centre for Teaching and Learning to support postdoc-led development events and activities.


Funding for postdoc-led events/activities

Researcher-led Events Scheme

The Researcher-led Events Scheme has been established to provide funds for early-career researchers (ECRs) across the University to set up and run research events such as conferences and symposia.

The intention is to facilitate ECR research culture and activities, while providing an opportunity for the development of invaluable skills and experience in the process.

Bids can be for up to £500 per activity.

Applications for 2021-22 are now open and will close at 5pm on Monday 28 February.

Find out more and apply


Enhanced Funding Scheme

In addition to the Researcher-led Events Scheme, a ring-fenced budget of enhanced funding is available to support high-cost events and activites involving external speakers or specialists.

The budget for Enhanced Funding is £60k per annum, awarded in three rounds. There is no specific funding envelope per round, decisions will be made based on the quality of the proposals received.


Major research funding

The Research Operations Office website provides information about the major funders of University of Cambridge research, as well as details on how to cost research projects and apply for funding. 

They also provide access to the Research Professional Database, which allows you to search for discipline-specific funding from UK and international sources.

The office is organised into School teams, which provide dedicated support to researchers applying for grant funding.


Funding databases

eLife worldwide database - a detailed list of funding schemes and opportunities for postdoctoral fellowships around the world, curated by eLife Ambassadors.

UKRI Funding Finder - funding opportunities from the UK research councils, including fellowships, grants and loans.

eLife travel database - a searchable database of travel funding opportunities for postdocs curated by eLife Ambassadors.

EURAXESS UK funding database - search for funding opportunities based on location, discipline and type of funding (includes travel to conferences, meeting organisation, short visits, longer fellowships, and PhD studentships).

British Council Researcher Links - funded workshops and travel grants to allow early career researchers to spend up to three months in a partner country.


Funding for public engagement

The Public Engagement Starter Fund is an exciting opportunity for University of Cambridge researchers to apply for small grants to undertake innovative public engagement with research activities.

The fund supports novel projects based on contemporary research at the University of Cambridge which aim to do one or more of the following:

  • reach a specific target audience
  • develop a partnership with a community of interest
  • create an innovative activity for any of the Cambridge Festivals.

Applicants can apply for grants up to £1,500.