British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowships

British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowships

This is a postdoctoral fellowship for outstanding early career researchers in the humanities or social sciences.

Scope and funding

The British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship offers outstanding early career researchers the opportunity to strengthen their experience of research and teaching in an academic environment. The primary emphasis is on the completion of a significant piece of publishable research, and the integration of the award holder into the community of established scholars within their field.

These awards are for applicants who do not currently hold a permanent contract and completed their viva between 1 April 2022 and 1 April 2025 (see here for full eligibility requirements).

The Academy typically funds 80% of salary costs, directly allocated and indirect costs under FEC. Research expenses are covered at 100% within the upper limit, which is set at £6000 over the three years.

When to apply

  • The call is now open on the British Academy website and will close 02 October 2024.
  • The internal support and approval process is now open, with a soft deadline to obtain approval from School Research Directors (approval stage 2) by 4pm, 1st July 2024 to guarantee full support for candidates, although candidates can still be approved beyond this date.
    • PLEASE NOTE: For applicants to be hosted by the School of Humanities, due to availability, all internal applications must be submitted to the SRD for approval by 24th June. This is a hard deadline for the School of Humanities only.

How to apply through the University of Bristol

We have an internal process for all applicants wanting to apply to this scheme and be hosted by the Faculty. Those approved for submission will be given the support of Research Development (RD) in the Division of Research, Enterprise and Innovation (DREI).

  1. Applicant requests a blank copy of a UoB internal British Academy outline form via this link (if you have any problems accessing the link, please contact
  2. Applicant approaches a potential mentor at Bristol with an outline of a proposal on the DREI outline template and a combined two-page CV and publication list.
  3. Approval Stage 1: The mentor will make a decision about whether to support your application. This decision is based on:
    • If the project and candidate will be competitive, given a likely success rate of less than 8%.
    • If the applicant will have publications at the point of external submission. Our feedback suggests that candidates need at least one article published or in press (and the best have at least three publications).
    • The mentor's capacity to give a strong level of support in developing the application (experience suggests that most successful applications have been developed with close support of the mentor).
    • Capacity to work with the School Research Director in September with regards to the Head of Department statement required for the application.
  4. Mentor to check School-specific methods for requesting authorisation - this will either be through Research Approval Process (RAP) or to contact the School Research Director (SRD) (copying in the Head of School) to request final authorisation. Where there is no RAP process, mentors to send SRDs the outline application (with complete mentor statement), along with the 2 page combined CV and publication list. School approval must be gained by 4pm, 1st July in order to guarantee full support for the applicant.
    • PLEASE NOTE: For applicants to be hosted by the School of Humanities, due to availability, all internal applications must be submitted to the SRD for approval by 24th June. This is a hard deadline for the School of Humanities only.
  5. Approval Stage 2: Mentors to be informed of whether the School will support the application, either through internal RAP or via email from SRD. NOTE: while there is no institutional quota, SRDs will only authorise applications that they consider to be competitive. SRDs will also notify the Research Development team of their intention to support the application.
  6. Selected applicants work up a full external application, with the support of their mentor, the School and the Research Development team. Full support can only be guaranteed if applicants obtain approval from their School (either via RAP or SRD) on or before 4pm Monday 1st July. Applications will be considered after that point, but it may not be possible to guarantee the full level of support offered by Bristol.
  7. In previous years, applicants have been invited to attend a training day in Bristol, scheduled this year as 10am-12.30pm on Tuesday 23rd July. This will be held in a hybrid format, with some applicants attending virtually and some attending in person – we highly recommend that you attend in person and use the opportunity to meet with your mentors on this day. Attendance at this day/session is not compulsory. If you are based within the UK and the School agrees to support your application, the University of Bristol may be able to contribute to the cost of your travel to attend the workshop in person. More details will follow after selection.
  8. External submission deadline is 02 October 2024, 5pm.

Eligibility and further details

Find full eligibility guidelines and more information about the scheme on the British Academy website.

Please email with any further questions.

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