The Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowships

First Viscount Leverhulme
Photograph reproduced by permission of Unilever Historical Archives.

About The Leverhulme Trust

The Leverhulme Trust was established in 1925 under the Will of the First Viscount Leverhulme with the instruction that its resources should be used to support “scholarships for the purposes of research and education.” Since that time, the Trust has provided funding for research projects, fellowships, studentships, bursaries and prizes.

The Trust places special weight on:

  • The originality of the projects put to them
  • The significance of the proposed work
  • The ability to judge and take appropriate risk in the project
  • The removal of barriers between traditional disciplines.

The Faculty of Social & Historical Sciences has approved the submission of 4 applications for this funding.


  • Applicants must not yet have held a full-time permanent academic post in a UK university or comparable UK institution, nor may Fellows hold such a post concurrently with the Early Career Fellowship. Those in receipt of a stipendiary Fellowship may not hold this at the same time as an Early Career Fellowship. Applicants who have existing funding in place for a duration equivalent to or greater than the duration of the Early Career Fellowship should not apply.
  • Applications are invited from those with a doctorate who submitted their doctoral thesis for viva voce examination not more than four years prior to the application closing date. Hence those who formally submitted their doctoral thesis before 28 February 2015 are not eligible unless they have since had a career break. Those wishing to make a case for a career break should present the case for interruption by a period of maternity leave, family commitments, illness, or other exceptional circumstances. 
  • Applicants must either hold a degree from a UK higher education institution at the time of taking up the Fellowship or at the time of application deadline must hold an academic position in the UK (e.g. fixed-term lectureship, fellowship) which commenced no less than 4 months prior to the closing date. Hence, those who do not hold a UK degree and whose UK academic position commenced after October 2018 are not eligible.  
  • The Research Awards Advisory Committee believes that the development of an academic career is best served by gaining experience at different institutions. Applicants who have not already moved institutions in the course of their academic career should normally nominate a new host institution, or otherwise demonstrate clear evidence of the academic reasons for remaining at the same institution, such as access to highly specialist equipment or a highly specialised research team. The intention is to support the career development of those building an academic career within the UK.
  • Candidates who have been, or are currently a Principal Investigator on a 3-year post-doctoral research project, or have held or currently hold a comparable 3-year post-doctoral position to pursue their own research are not eligible to apply.
  • The matching funding contributed by the host institution must be drawn from generally available funds and must not be associated with any other grants received by the institution. The host department must secure the matching funding for the applicant before the closing date. Applications that do not meet these conditions are ineligible and will be rejected.
  • A candidate may submit only one application per year. Previously unsuccessful applicants may reapply. Candidates may not apply for both an Early Career Fellowship and a Study Abroad Studentship in the same year. Candidates who have held a Leverhulme Study Abroad Studentship for postdoctoral research are not eligible to apply for and Early Career Fellowship. 


The Trust will contribute 50% of each Fellow's total salary costs up to a maximum of £25,000 per annum and the balance is to be paid by the host institution.

Given the prestige of the awards each Fellow may request annual research expenses of up to £6,000 to further his or her research activities. Please ensure that applications do not include any of the ineligible costs listed here.


Fellowships are tenable for three years on a full-time basis. The Trust will support requests to hold the award part-time over a proportionately longer period for health related reasons, disability or childcare commitments. Fellowships must commence between 1 September 2019 and 1 May 2020.

Application Process

  • Each application submitted to the Faculty Office by Departments should include a complete Leverhulme application form. Applications not on the Leverhulme application form will be deemed ineligible and will not be considered.
  • Applicants should contact staff members in the relevant department to act as their mentor and assist them with the preparation of their application.


  • Applicants should contact their proposed department regarding departmental deadlines. 
  • Departments (not applicants) to submit applications to Dania Herrera in the Joint Faculty Office by 2pm on Wednesday 16 January 2019.
  • Faculty will notify departments with their decision by Thursday 7 February 2019 at the latest.
  • The deadline for successful applicants to submit applications to The Leverhulme Trust is Thursday 28 February 2019. 

Point of Contact

Departments should send applications to the Faculty Office not applicants.  Applicants should contact their proposed department as stated above.

Appropriate office space will be assigned to successful applicants.