Institutional Strategic Support Fund (ISSF3)

Areas to be funded

Wellcome and the University have agreed that ISSF3 awards should be made across five strategic areas in this round.

Areas to be Funded

Wellcome and the University of Edinburgh have agreed that ISSF3 awards should be in the following strategic areas and applications for an award should fit within one or more of these:

Support for early career researchers

Support for early career researchers/Chancellor’s Fellows/lecturers (within first 5 years of employment)/postdoctoral researchers.  An example of activities awards will support:

•    pump priming grants to generate key pilot data for fellowship and grant applications or, less commonly, to complete key data for publications.

•    realistic career development / key step towards personal funding

•    exchange grants to learn a new technique or collaborate, especially to prepare for a fellowship/grant application

•    momentum awards to maintain research activity, e.g. by employing a technician, during disrupted periods e.g. parental or sick leave.

Equality and diversity support

Momentum awards, described above, are not limited to early career researchers,  and may be awarded to academic staff whose research progress risks being delayed by potentially disadvantageous circumstances, including but not limited to parental leave. Applications will be handled in confidence.

Support for public engagement

Funding is directed towards public engagement projects in their entirety or as part of a wider project where public engagement support will deliver better outcomes and impact.  It is important to describe how the quality and reach of the activity will be measured.

Support for interdisciplinary projects

Response-mode pump-priming awards in these categories are highly flexible and are intended to enhance applications for major research grants, including programmatic and infrastructure awards and Wellcome Trust Investigator awards. Principal applicants will be academic staff and new collaborations between independent investigators, especially in different Schools/Colleges, are encouraged. These funds are not intended simply to supplement well-funded groups, and applicants must explain why the award is needed quickly and why it cannot be obtained as a conventional external grant.

ISSF3 will also fund interdisciplinary workshops to encourage new collaborations and develop research networks. Proposals are encouraged for workshops that bring together investigators from multiple research centres/institutes/schools to address a common theme.

Covid-related work

Applications relating to COVID research and recovery



Please note:

The ISSF Committee reserves the right not to make a full complement of awards in each priority area and very occasionally to make awards outwith the scheduled competition rounds as opportunities emerge.