Edinburgh to lead on boosting UK researchers

The University of Edinburgh has been selected to lead a major UK-wide collaboration that will shape the research leaders of the next generation.

Edinburgh will use its expertise to manage the Future Leaders Fellowships (FLF) Development Network, which will provide training and development to 210 new Fellows and 40 early career researchers and innovators.

The £2.8 million contract was awarded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) to the University’s Institute for Academic Development following a competitive tender process. The programme is funded for three years.

We are delighted and honoured to have been chosen to lead this important programme. The UK-wide Future Leaders Fellowships is a tremendous programme to develop the next generation of exceptional researchers. The Development Network is a partnership between the expertise of the universities involved and the vision and ambition of the Fellows. The intensive learning and development we offer will give Fellows the additional skills and perspectives become the research leaders of the future.

Professor Jonathan SecklSenior Vice Principal at the University of Edinburgh

Building links

The Fellowships were created in 2018 to establish the careers of world-class research and innovation leaders across UK business and academia.

UKRI described the Edinburgh-led consortium as “world-leading” with expertise in fostering the collaborations and building the links with networks that will help the Fellows thrive.

The 16 Edinburgh academics who are current Fellows will be able to engage with the Network.

Our proposal was designed in collaboration with Future Leaders Fellows at Edinburgh and our partners. Co-creation is at the heart of our plans and will result in a unique ‘for leaders, by leaders’ approach.

Dr Sara ShintonDirector Future Leaders Fellows Development Network and Head of Researcher Development

UK collaboration

The Network is made up of seven institutions, with Edinburgh as the lead. Also involved are: the University of Cambridge, Cardiff University, the University of Leeds, University College London, the School of Advanced Study, and Queens University Belfast.

Partner universities will be organised into four regional hubs and will connect Fellows with local, national and global leaders in research and innovation.

The Network will focus on five areas: enterprise and self-leadership; leading teams and collaborations; transforming research cultures; contributing to UK society; and global citizenship.

Fellows will be offered a range of opportunities including structured workshops and events, coaching, and networking with industry and researchers, mentoring. They will also receive leadership and peer review training, engagement support, and international research encounters.

In addition, a funding stream has been created to help initiate and grow the groups’ collaborative ideas that will develop as Fellows start working and learning together.

Related links

UKRI - Future Leaders Fellowships

Institute for Academic Development


[Picture credit: Getty/EtiAmmos]