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Newton Advanced Fellowships

This scheme provides established international researchers with an opportunity to develop the research strengths and capabilities of their research group through training, collaboration and reciprocal visits with a partner in the UK. The skills and knowledge gained should lead to changes in the wellbeing of communities and increased economic benefits.

Thunderheads build over the Amazon river and rainforest.

This award is currently available to international early career group leaders to develop their research by linking them with some of the best research groups in the UK. The aim is to:

  • Support the development of a well-trained research community who can contribute to poverty alleviation by transferring new skills and creating new knowledge which can lead to changes in the wellbeing of communities and increased economic benefits.
  • Strengthen research excellence in partner countries by supporting promising independent, early-career scientists and their research groups and networks to develop their research through training, collaboration, reciprocal visits and the transfer of knowledge and skills from the UK.
  • Establish long-term links between the best research groups (and networks) in partner countries and the UK to ensure that improvements in research capacity are sustainable in the longer term. Such long-term links will also benefit the UK, securing our position with partner countries as the scientific partner of choice.

This scheme is funded by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy as part of the Newton Fund.

Am I eligible to apply?

Applicants must have a PhD or equivalent research experience and hold a permanent or fixed-term contract in an eligible university or research institute, which must span the duration of the project. Applicants should have no more than 15 years of postdoctoral experience. Collaborations should focus on a single project involving overseas-based scientist (“the Applicant”) and UK-based scientist (“the Co-applicant”).

Awards are currently only available for scientists in the following countries:

Before applying, please ensure that you meet all the eligibility requirements, which are explained in the scheme notes.

Value and tenure

Awards last for up to three years and are available to support researchers across the natural sciences, including clinical or patient-oriented research. Up to £37,000 is available each year, guidelines for use as follows:

  • A salary top up (maximum £5,000) for the group leader from the partner country.
  • Research support (maximum £15,000) to cover costs for studentships, staff, consumables or equipment.
  • Travel and subsistence (maximum £12,000) to cover travel costs of the UK partner to the international partner and/or travel of the international partner to the UK.
  • Training (maximum £5,000) to support the career development of the applicant and their research group or network.

What is the application process?

Applications can only be submitted online using the Royal Society’s electronic Grant Application and Processing (e-GAP) system.

Applications will be assessed by the Newton Advanced Fellowships Panel and decisions made in September 2017.

Overseas opportunities

The following opportunities are currently available to UK scientists with our Newton Fund partners overseas:

Opportunities in South Africa
The DST-NRF Fellowships for early career researchers from the United Kingdom provide the opportunity for post-doctoral researchers to work at a South African research institution for a period of up to six months.

Opportunities in Turkey 
The International Researchers Fellowships Programme and Fellowships for Visiting Scientists and Scientists on Sabbatical Leave provide opportunities for researchers in the UK to develop collaborations or pursue academic research at Universities or Institutions in Turkey. 

Opportunities in China
The Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) offers the CAS President’s International Fellowship Initiative (PIFI) to support highly-qualified international scientists and postgraduate students to work and study at CAS institutions and strengthen their scientific collaboration with CAS researchers.

Opportunities in Brazil
Brazilian State Funding Agencies, articulated by its National Council (CONFAP), will offer support through Fellowships and grants launching on 15 August 2016 to researchers based in UK Universities and Research Institutions who are looking to spend from two weeks to four years working in research in Brazil, in collaboration with local colleagues.

Opportunities in Mexico
The Mexican Academy of Sciences (MAS) and the National Council for Science and Technology (CONACYT) invite candidates to submit applications for research exchange within the framework of the "Newton International Collaboration Programme" to undertake short-term visits in 2017 in the form of MAS Short-term Mobility Grants.

About the Newton Fund

Newton Fund

The Newton Fund is part of the UK’s official development assistance. Its aim is to develop science and innovation partnerships that promote the economic development and welfare of partner countries.

The Newton Fund was launched in 2014 and originally consisted of £75 million each year for 5 years. In the 2015 UK Spending Review it was agreed to extend and expand the Fund. The Newton Fund was extended from 2019 to 2021 and expanded by doubling the £75 million investment to £150 million by 2021, leading to a £735 million UK investment to 2021, with partner countries providing matched resources within the Fund.

The skills and knowledge gained through these awards should lead to changes in the wellbeing of communities and increased economic benefits. The Royal Society is one of several contributing partners to this scheme.