UCL News


New funding for public engagement work

16 February 2009

Two new streams of funding are open to UCL research and teaching staff with a desire to involve the public with their work.

Please note that the closing date for applications is 25 February 2009.

The Innovation Seed Fund and the Beacon Fellowships are funded by HEFCE (the Higher Education Funding Council for England), Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust, as part of the Beacons for Public Engagement programme. Under this programme, UCL has been recognised as one of the universities in the UK that best reaches out to non-academics.

Beacon Fellowships

Beacon Fellowships exist to:

  • allow UCL staff to understand how first-class cultural and engagement organisations work
  • develop the engagement practice of UCL staff
  • allow partner organisations to make in-depth use of specialist UCL knowledge.

Beacon Fellowships allows staff to be relieved of teaching or research duties so that they can spend a portion of time working on public engagement projects.  These projects can be with any one of UCL's six partner organisations (Arts Catalyst; The British Museum; Birkbeck; the Southbank Centre; City & Islington College; and Cheltenham Festivals).

The fellowship may be taken as a sabbatical or as a secondment, either part-time or full-time. £50,000 is available in total for all fellowships awarded in one year.

To find out more, and to apply, visit the Beacon Fellowships webpage.

Innovation Seed Fund

Innovation Seed funding of up to £20,000 per project is available for pioneering, inventive public engagement projects that bring UCL staff and the public together.

Projects must aim to meet one or more of the central strategic aims of the Beacons for Public Engagement funding, which include:

  • using models of public engagement that are new to the HEI sector
  • using best-practice engagement methods with new audiences
  • involving large numbers of UCL staff who have not previously done this kind of work
  • exploring new methods of evaluating academic public engagement.

To find out more, and to apply, visit the Innovation Seed Fund webpage.

The Public Engagement Unit at UCL can help you with your application.  If you wish to find out more about the funding available, or discuss your ideas, please contact the Unit

To find out more about how the Unit can help you in all aspects of your work with the public, please visit the Unit's website.