Skip to content

Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship

This scheme offers a recognised first step into an independent research career for outstanding early career scientists who require a flexible working pattern due to personal circumstances, such as caring responsibilities and/or health-related conditions.

Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship
Human cortical neurons in a dish. Credit: Dr Sarah Newey, Dorothy Hodgkin Fellow from the University of Oxford.

This scheme is open to applications.

The Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship scheme is now open to applications. The deadline for applications is 31 October, at 3pm UK time. 

Please note that the funding rules for the Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowships 2024 have been reviewed and updated. Please check the scheme notes below. 

Support with your application: FAQs, top tips and support for applicants with disabilities.

Apply for this Scheme on Flexi-Grant

Changes to the Fellowship

As part of the Royal Society’s wider changes to our costing policy, applicants are now permitted to apply for a maximum award value over eight years (£1.83 million for the 2024 round). Maximum caps for salary contribution and research costs have been removed and going forward there will be a total maximum grant value for applicants to work with. 

We recommend reading the information in full and contacting your host organisation Research Office in the first instance with any questions.

About the scheme

This scheme offers you:

  • the opportunity to build an independent research career  
  • freedom, time and long-term flexible support to pursue high quality and innovative lines of scientific research
  • flexibility to accommodate personal circumstances such as caring responsibilities or health-related needs
  • support to develop as a research leader through tailored, high quality professional development, networking and engagement opportunities

This scheme is highly flexible to accommodate for part-time working, sabbaticals and secondments. There is also provision for maternity, paternity, adoptive or extended sick leave.

Am I eligible to apply?

Research must be within the Royal Society’s remit of natural sciences, which includes but is not limited to biological research, chemistry, engineering, mathematics and physics. For a full list, please see the breakdown of subject groups and areas supported by the Royal Society. 

You must be able to demonstrate that you currently have, or will have by the start of the fellowship, a need for flexible support due to personal circumstances. This can include parental responsibilities, caring responsibilities, and/or clinically diagnosed health conditions that create a need for a flexible working pattern.

You can apply for this scheme if you:

  • are ready to take the next steps to develop your independent research career; you must take the leading role in the project
  • are in the early stages of your research career having up to six years of research experience since your PhD by the closing date of the round. Career breaks are taken into account - please refer to the scheme notes for further details
  • do not hold a permanent post (including proleptic or rolling contract of employment) in a university or not-for-profit organisation
  • do not hold, or have not previously held, an equivalent fellowship that provides an opportunity to establish an independent research group and therefore independent research status

For further information about how to apply, please read the FAQs provided at the top of the page in the grey box.

Before applying, please ensure that you meet all eligibility requirements, laid out in the scheme notes. 

What is the scheme’s value and duration?

Applicants can apply for up to a maximum of £1.83 million over eight years.

Funds can cover:

  • Contribution to the award holder’s salary
  • 80% of the award holder’s indirect and estate costs 
  • Equipment costs and research expenses including consumables, travel, etc. These costs will be paid at 100%.
  • 80% contribution towards research assistance salary and associated indirect and estate costs 
  • Support for a new four-year PhD studentship(s)
  • Relocation and visa costs for the applicants and their dependants (partner and children). The total grant cap may be exceeded in order to cover relocation/visa costs if this is well justified in the application.
  • Awards will be made for an eight-year period but confirmation of funding for years six to eight will be subject to completion of a satisfactory mid-fellowship checkpoint review at the start of year four.

Please read the scheme notes for full value of award information.

Dorothy Hodgkin Fellows have the opportunity to access a range of training opportunities covering topics including leadership, science communication and public engagement. Furthermore, opportunities arise throughout the year for Dorothy Hodgkin Fellows to meet with other award holders and participate in activities coordinated by the science policy, public engagement, schools outreach and industry engagement teams at the Society. For further details relating to the additional benefits of holding a Royal Society Research Fellowship, please read our summary page.

What is the application process?

Applications should be submitted through the Society’s grant management system Flexi-Grant®. 

Your application will go through the process detailed on the Making a grant application page overseen by the Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship Selection Committee. Your need for flexibility will only be viewed by the Society’s Grants team to check your eligibility for the scheme.

Panel members and independent reviewers will assess an application solely on the basis of scientific merit. 

Interviews will be held in early June at the Royal Society so you are advised to keep this period free. You will be notified of the result of the application process around the end of July 2024.

The Royal Society recognises that diversity is essential for delivering excellence in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The Society wants to encourage applications from the widest range of backgrounds, perspectives and experiences to maximise innovation and creativity in science for the benefit of humanity. We regularly review and revise processes to help ensure that all talented applicants have an equitable chance to succeed as per the assessment criteria. This includes ensuring all panel members are briefed on unconscious bias in decision making as part of our assessment process.

Please note a new statement for applicants on the impacts of COVID-19 has been released on our website. 

Support for applicants with disabilities

The Royal Society welcomes applications from scientists with disabilities and provides adjustments to ensure that they can participate fully in the selection process. If you need an adjustment when accessing the application form, attending interviews, or for any other part of the application process, please contact the Grants team via email or +44 20 7451 2666. Adjustments can include, but are not limited to:

  • extension of the deadline
  • additional support to complete the application form
  • technical support during interviews for candidates with hearing or visual impairments
  • support during interviews for neurodiverse candidates and candidates with mental health conditions
  • additional costs to support candidates requiring a chaperone during interviews.

For more information regarding the scheme, please contact the Grants team or visit our contact us page

Below, you can read case studies from our Dorothy Hodgkin Fellows. You can also read an in-depth report on the career pathways of our alumni on the Career Pathway Tracker page.

Meet our Dorothy Hodgkin Fellows

Was this page useful?
Thank you for your feedback
Thank you for your feedback. Please help us improve this page by taking our short survey.