Opportunities for postdoctoral fellowships

Details about our postdoctoral fellowships, including 'Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship Scheme' and 'British Academy Post-Doctoral Fellowships'.

British Academy Post-Doctoral Fellowships

British Academy (BA) have just opened this year’s Postdoctoral Fellowships competition.

See below for our internal and BA deadlines.

The scheme offers opportunities for outstanding early career researchers to strengthen their experience of research and teaching in a university environment which will develop their CV and improve their prospects of obtaining permanent lecturing posts by the end of the Fellowship.

The primary emphasis is on completion of a significant piece of publishable research, which will be assisted by full membership of an academic community of established scholars working in similar fields. Applicants must be within three years of the award of their doctorate. It is a prerequisite that you have already established a relationship with an academic mentor at Moray House before application. It should be noted that the scheme is highly competitive. Further information is available from the BA website.

Scheme eligibility

The British Academy's guidelines state that:

1.       British citizens and any nationals from the European Economic Area are eligible, regardless of where their doctorate was obtained. Anyone of any nationality who has a doctorate from a UK university is eligible.

  • If an applicant does not meet the prior categories, they may be accepted if they can demonstrate ‘strong prior association’ with the UK academic community. This typically means a current significant period – with a minimum period of one year, which will need to be completed prior to your application being submitted – of employment at a UK institution in either a teaching or research position which is not permanent. Postgraduate degrees (MA or MSc) do not count.

2.       Early Career Status: There is no age criterion for these awards. Instead, eligible applicants are expected to be at an early stage of their career. This is defined as being within three years from the date of your successful Viva Voce examination.

3.       This period extends from 1 April 2021 to 1 April 2024.

  • Exemption from this criterion may be granted for reasons occurring after the date of the viva voce examination such as: maternity leave, illness, family commitments etc. If you wish to apply for exemptions, please email where the British Academy will review your case for an exemption on a case-by-case basis.

4.       The applicant must already be of postdoctoral status at the time when the Research Awards Committee meets. Applicants who expect to have had their viva by 1 April 2024 are eligible for consideration, but will have to withdraw their application if the examination is not completed on time.

5.       No applicant who has been appointed to a permanent academic post in an institution of higher education at any time in their career, whether in the UK or overseas, will be eligible. This includes positions held before the award of a doctorate.

  • Exemption from this condition will generally be granted if an applicant has held a permanent role of less than 0.5 FTE. Email at to apply for an exemption.

6.       The British Academy does not allow for resubmissions for the Postdoctoral Fellowship. If you have previously applied and failed to reach the Second Stage of the competition, you are not eligible to re-apply. Previously unsuccessful applicants will only be able to submit another application if specifically invited to do so by the British Academy.

It is important for those considering an application to think carefully about whether they and their proposed project are at a sufficiently advanced stage to be submitted to such a competitive scheme.

Our timetable for submission

Contact our RKEI Office

Given the highly competitive nature of the scheme and high number of University of Edinburgh applicants expected, the School will be operating an internal sifting process where we ask prospective candidates to complete a two-page summary of their proposed research along with a two-page abbreviated CV and name of confirmed mentor and send it to, copying your confirmed mentor into the email, by 5pm on Wednesday 23 August 2023.

Your summary of research should note your name, project title and confirmed mentor, and should include aims and objectives, proposed methods and expected outputs and impact of the research (no more than two sides A4, font size 11). Please ask your mentor to review your summary of research and incorporate their feedback before you submit. Please contact  with any queries.

23 Aug 2023 MHSES internal deadline: Candidates send summary of research and CV and confirm that their academic mentor has agreed to support them in their application.
By 8 Sept 2023

Candidates will be advised if they are successful in the internal sifting process and can develop applications for submission. Mentors to approach two internal peer reviewers as soon as candidates are notified they have been successful.

8 – 25 Sept 2023 Candidates will develop their full proposal, with support of mentor. Mentors will also work with candidates to gather two peer reviews of the proposal from within the University of Edinburgh (mentors should be available to support candidates during this period). Mentors will work with candidates to incorporate feedback from peer reviewers in the final application.
By 25 Sept 2023 Candidates send completed application to RKE Office for MHSES internal approvals process.
By 20 Sept 2023 Candidates submit MHSES-approved application via Flexigrant, for final institutional approvals and submission to funder.
4 Oct 2023 Funder deadline

Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship Scheme 2023

Moray House School of Education and Sport invites notes of interest for the forthcoming round of the Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship scheme by 14 November 2022, with a deadline for outline proposals to the School of 28 November 2022.

Leverhulme Foundation have announced details of their 2023 Early Career Fellowship competition. The aim of the scheme is to provide career development opportunities for those who are at a relatively early stage of their academic careers and 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 will hopefully lead to a more permanent academic position within the same or another Institution.

We are currently inviting applications for the 2023 Scheme from candidates already in receipt of a PhD, or who have submitted their doctoral thesis by 4pm on the funder’s closing date of 23 February 2023. If you submitted your PhD before February 2019 you are not eligible to apply, unless you have had a career break. Due to the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic the Trust will accept applications from candidates who submitted their doctoral thesis for examination up to five years prior to the closing date if they can make a case for their work having been impacted by the pandemic. Hence those who formally submitted their doctoral thesis for viva voce examination between 23 February 2018 and 23 February 2019 are eligible to apply if their work has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and they should explain their case in their application. Please read the information on the link below and ensure you meet the eligibility and scheme criteria before applying.

Leverhulme Trust: Early Career Fellowships

You should note interest and confirm your proposed mentor by emailing our RKEI Office by Monday 14 November 2022. Outline proposals should be submitted along with a short summary CV, as below, by emailing our RKEI Office by 5pm on 28 November 2022. Please note that a maximum of two candidates will be selected to develop a full-stage application for submission to the Leverhulme Trust in February 2023.

Email our RKEI Office

Your outline proposal should include an outline of your proposed research, including methodology and timetable; planned outputs; dissemination plans; why you consider the School of Education and Sport within the University of Edinburgh to be the best place for you to undertake your project; and a note of your intended mentor, who should be a member of MHSES staff. The outline proposal should be no more than two pages of A4, using a font of no less than point 11 with 2cm margins. Your CV should similarly be no more than 2 pages of A4, and include your publications to date along with your academic history, including the date your PhD was awarded.

You should confirm with your proposed mentor before you submit your outline that they will be happy to support you through the application, as well as during the Fellowship – it would be beneficial if they were to comment on a draft of the proposal prior to submission. If you do not have a mentor in mind, please have a look at our staff research profiles on the 'Edinburgh Research Explorer' and on our staff pages (see links to these below). You’ll then be able to find staff working in your area of research and to make contact with them.

Edinburgh Research Explorer

Our staff pages

Our timetable for submission in 2023

Mon 14 Nov 2022

Candidates should note interest to including the name of their proposed mentor who should be a member of Moray House School of Education and Sport (MHSES) academic research staff (it is recommended that your mentor is not your PhD supervisor).

Mon 28 Nov 2022, 5pm

Deadline for submission of outline project proposal and short CV to


12 Dec 2022 Applicants advised if selected for full submission
13 Dec 2022 –23 Jan 2023

Applicant to develop full application with mentor. Mentors will also work with candidates to gather two peer reviews of the proposal from within the University of Edinburgh, and mentors will facilitate candidate’s selection of appropriate referee (mentors should be available to support candidates during this period)

23 Jan - 9 Feb 2023 Mentors work with candidates to address feedback from peer reviews
9 Feb 2023 Candidates send completed application to RKE for approvals process

23 Feb 2023


Funder deadline

If you have any queries, please contact our MHSES Research, Knowledge Exchange and Impact (RKEI) Office team.

Contact our RKEI Office