EPSRC postdoctoral fellowship

UK Research and Innovation

08 December 2020
Rolling deadline
R&D and Higher Education

Apply for a fellowship focusing on either:

  • energy
  • mathematical sciences.

You must have either:

  • a PhD
  • at least four years’ experience in a relevant field by the start of your fellowship.

An eligible UK research organisation must host and support you during your fellowship.

Your fellowship can be up to three years long. This is prorated for part-time fellows, at a minimum of 50% FTE.

Your project can use one or a combination of:

  • discovery science
  • innovation
  • instrumentation and technique development
  • software engineering.

There is no limit on how much funding you can request. We cover 80% of your full economic costs. Your research organisation must fund the remaining 20%.

You could consider applying for a post-doctoral fellowship if you:

  • have recently started formulating your own research ideas for programmes of work up to three years in duration that will deliver high quality research with a focus on discovery science, innovation, instrumentation or technique development, or software engineering
  • can demonstrate that you have acquired the skills and expertise to successfully deliver your research proposal
  • have not previously held a significant grant (usually defined as those which included PDRA time, capital equipment or were in excess of £100,000 full economic cost)
  • have identified training and development needs to enable you to prepare for an enhanced career in research and innovation.

If you have already been in receipt of significant funding as defined above, or have been leading in an area of technical development, you may wish to apply for an open fellowship.

Research organisations may wish to show their commitment to applicants by providing additional support. Read the host organisation statement for more detail.

You can apply for up to three years for a postdoctoral stage award. We will also allow fellowships over shorter periods. You can spend between 50% and 100% of your time on a fellowship.

If you want to work part-time, you can hold your EPSRC fellowship part-time as well, at a minimal level of 50%. In these circumstances, the duration of your fellowship can be extended pro rata.

We will fund 80% of the full economic costs of your project. You may request funding for:

  • equipment and other items needed to carry out the project
  • costs related to impact
  • travel and subsistence.

We will not fund costs for additional researchers on postdoctoral fellowships or individual items of equipment over £10,000 (including VAT).

Read the equipment below £10,000 (including VAT) guidelines.

If you are a research organisation We expect eligible research organisations to submit the most suitable candidates for these fellowships and identify the additional support and resources they will provide the applicant with if successful.

If you are a research organisation, you must:

  • make sure that aims and aspirations of the applicant are suitable for a fellowship application
  • support the applicant to ensure they have:
  • identified areas they need to improve on and how they intend to gain experience to meet these needs.
  • Considered their knowledge of ethical, responsible and inclusive research culture and thought about how they could further this knowledge.
  • Considered if they need a mentor, and what aspects of their development their mentor will help with.
  • Identify the additional support you will provide to ensure successful project delivery and provide enhanced career development opportunities.

Find details of current fellows

We invest in people with leadership potential at all career stages, helping them to lead excellent research projects.

Read more about the inspiring scientists and engineers who are our current fellows and find out how taking part in a fellowship has influenced their careers.

Find examples of projects we have funded by searching for ‘fellowship’ in our online portfolio.


Research grants are open to UK higher education institutions, research council institutes, UKRI-approved independent research organisations, Public Sector Research Establishments and NHS bodies with research capacity.

Read the guidance on institutional eligibility.

You can apply if you have a PhD or have worked in a relevant field for at least four years by the start date of your fellowship.

There are no eligibility rules about how many years of postdoctoral experience you need or whether you are currently in a permanent academic position.

We encourage applicants who have taken a non-standard career path after their first degree. We also welcome applications from candidates who want to move back into research after a career break or any other type of break from active research.

There are no restrictions on nationality.

For more information, read our fellowship application guide (PDF, 344KB).

We will not accept uninvited resubmissions of projects that have been submitted to UKRI or any other funder.

Submissions to this call will not count towards the EPSRC repeatedly unsuccessful applicants policy.

Learn more or apply
All information about this funding has been collected from and belongs to the funding organization
20 April 2023