UCL Institute for Global Prosperity


UCL Graduate Research Scholarships 2020-21 competition

26 October 2020

UCL Graduate Research Scholarships (GRS) aim to attract high-quality students to undertake research at UCL.

Person talking by laptop

Up to 25 UCL Graduate Research Scholarships are available annually to prospective and current UCL research students from any country. Details of the scheme are available on the UCL scholarships and funding webpage. 

Eligibility requirements
Applicants must be:

  • In receipt of an offer of admission to (please see IMPORTANT NOTE below) or currently registered at UCL on a full- or part-time research degree programme, and holding or expecting to achieve at least an upper second-class Honours UK undergraduate degree or equivalent qualification.
  • While current students may apply, those entering their third year of research will normally only be considered for funding in exceptional circumstances.

Please note that Online, Non-resident PhDs and Professional Doctorate students are not currently eligible for this scholarship programme.

Selection criteria
Scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic excellence and research potential. Financial circumstances are not taken into account.

Value: benefits and duration
The scholarships consist of fees equivalent to the standard postgraduate UK rate 2021/22: £5,526 - tbc) plus a maintenance stipend (2021/22: £17,631- tbc) for full-time study (benefits are calculated 'pro rata' for part-time students). The scholarship also includes additional research costs of up to £1,200 per year for the stated duration of the programme.

Awards are normally tenable for years 1, 2, and 3 of a full-time research degree programme (or years 1-5 of a part-time programme), subject to annual review and renewal.

If granted, funding begins at the start of the next academic session.

Application deadline and procedure

In order to apply for a GRS you must complete the following steps:

Step 1 - Apply for admission to UCL [*This step only applies to prospective students who do not have an offer of admission].

You must submit a complete application for admission onto IGP’s research degree programme by the 1st December 2020.

Step 2 - Submit application documents to the Institute for Global Prosperity.

Applicants must contact IGP (contact details below) as soon as possible to let us know that you will be applying to the GRS competition. You must then submit the following documents in one PDF by Wednesday 13th January 2021:

Research Scholarship cover sheet (download the Research Scholarship cover sheet)

CV – Please make sure your CV is up to date and lists all publications, past/current prizes, awards and scholarships.

A lay summary of your research proposal, on a Word or PDF document (max. 200 words). When writing your research proposal/outline please note that the selection panel members are not likely to be specialists in your subject. Please describe clearly – in language which can be understood by academics from any discipline – the aim of your research, the methodology you will use and the potential significance of this study to your discipline. It is extremely important that you pay attention to this summary and write in as clear language as possible as it may significantly affect the outcome of your application. The proposal should be written by you, not your supervisor or any other member of academic department staff.

Academic transcripts - Please ensure that each academic transcript submitted includes clarification on the grading scale/range of grades possible for that degree.

2 References – Reference number 1 should relate to your most recently completed university programme/degree (or the one you intend to complete, if applicable) and can be the same referee who submitted a reference as part of your admission application. Please use this Reference Form for reference number 1. Reference number 2 should relate to your current or intended research programme/project, for which you are seeking funding. This reference MUST be provided by your research supervisor at UCL. If you are a prospective student and your supervisor has not yet been allocated, please contact your department to confirm who your UCL supervisor will be. Please use this Reference Form for reference number 2.

All application materials should be sent to Dr. Christopher Harker (christopher.harker@ucl.ac.uk) and Dr. Andres Vicente (a.vicente@ucl.ac.uk). Please include GRS application in the subject line of your email.

Applicants will be considered for a GRS, and overseas fee payers will also automatically be considered for the UCL Overseas Research Scholarship (ORS) and, if applicable, the Chinese Scholarship Council-UCL Joint Research Scholarship.

You must apply for admission and submit the additional information to your department no later than Wednesday, 13th January 2021.

The Institute for Global Prosperity is permitted to nominate 2 candidates to the UCL Student Funding Office. An internal selection process will take place in January, and the top 2 candidates will be advanced by Wednesday 27th January 2021.

Please note that the academic judgement of the panel is final. It will not be practical for the IGP panel to provide feedback to candidates.


Potential candidates must ensure that they submit all scholarship application materials by the deadline irrespective of whether an offer of admission has reached them or not. The UCL Student Funding Office will check UCL systems at a later date to confirm whether the scholarship applicant holds an offer of admission and on what date that offer was made.

The selection panel meets in February and successful candidates can expect to be notified by the week of 15th March 2021. If you do not hear by that date, you may assume that your application has been unsuccessful.

*NOTE: All scholarship and student funding schemes are subject to availability of funds, and details given here are subject to change at any time. Potential applicants are urged to check information regularly to ensure they are aware of current procedures, deadlines etc.