Beacon Bursaries
Funding for up to £2000 for UCL public engagement projects

For over 12 years now, the Engagement Team at UCL Culture has run the flagship Beacon Bursary Funding Scheme to advance the practice and culture of public and community engagement within UCL.  

We’re thrilled to have awarded eleven bursaries in 2020. Find out more about our funded projects at this web link. The Beacon Bursaries will return in late 2021. 

What’s different for the 2020/21 round? 

We launched later in the year than we would have liked, due to delays caused by the Covid-19 crisis. This meant that: 

  • Awardees needed to be able to spend their funding award by July 2021. Successful applicants were notified by December 2020.  

  • We expect all applications to consider alternatives where face to face contact may not be possible, and subsequent accessibility implications for engagement activities such as digital poverty  

  • We encourage applicants to consider their own workload before applying, given the short application period and the extra-ordinary demands many staff will be facing at this time. However, the Engagement team is ready and available to provide advice and support to potential applicants. 

As part of our ongoing work to improve the inclusivity and accessibility of the scheme, we encourage applications from those who are underrepresented in the sector and at UCL including but, not exclusive, to disabled, D/deaf and neurodiverse people, LGBTQ+ people, people from Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority backgrounds. In particular we commit to making efforts to develop and support bursary applications from the Black academic community at UCL. 

With support from UCL East we also have dedicated funding for projects working with communities in east London.  


Download the application form (Word) 

We strongly advise that before you submit an application you read the following. 

Application Form Guidance PDF 

Funding Scheme Guidance PDF  

What willl Happen if you are Successfully Funded Guidance PDF 

We also suggest speaking to a member of the Engagement Team before you submit your project.  We often run support and advice sessions, please watch this space to find out more and upcoming dates.

A further support session is delivered in collaboration with Race Matters @UCL. Follow the link to find out more about Race Matters @UCL or to join the forum. 

If you would like to book a half-hour during these sessions to discuss your project, please email the team with a brief (paragraph at max) length description of your idea, your name and research department. Note that these sessions will be first-come, first served – if you are not able to attend the sessions please email the team and we will be happy to try to arrange another time, capacity permitting. 

For announcements and further information sign up to our newsletter.  

We awarded 8 Beacon Bursaries in 2019. Read more about them here.

You can also download a list of all previously funded projects.




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