What am I entitled to?
Time for training and development
Research staff in MPLS are entitled to a minimum of ten days per annum for their professional development and training.
Training and professional development is defined as anything that enhances your skills and ability to do you work; and is applicable to your current role or your future career. You should agree when these days can be taken well in advance with your Principal Investigator, and they should be discussed in your annual Career of Personal Development Review. Read the policy in full here.
A development review
All contract research staff and research fellows in the MPLS Division are entitled to receive a development review during the first six months of employment either from their PI or another senior member of faculty, and then an annual development review thereafter.
The purpose of the development review is to give you an opportunity to reflect on your current work, and develop a plan for the future, whether in academia, industry, public service or elsewhere. The review is not linked in any way to references, discipline, reappointment or promotion.
The manager responsible for HR in your department will be in touch to let you know when your review is due and will explain the procedure. You will be responsible for completing a form in advance of a meeting with your reviewer. That form will prompt you to think about your achievements to date in a number of different areas, your career objectives, and your next steps in order to meet those objectives. You will also need to update your CV. You will then send the form and your CV to your reviewer and meet to discuss what you can do over the next 6 to 12 months to set you on the path to achieve those career objectives.
If you wish, you may choose someone other than your line manager or the PI in your research group to do the review.
In the meantime, you may wish to update your CV and start the process of thinking about your career plans with your colleagues or the Careers Service (which also provides one-to-one advice).
The training courses we provide within MPLS are free for research staff in the Division, however many external training and development opportunities are provided at a cost. A number of organisations provide support to researchers, particularly those early in their career, to enable them to advance their careers as independent researchers. They are usually targeted at specific research areas or specific groups. Colleges also offer Junior Research Fellowships.
Funders often impose restrictions on the number of applications that each university can submit to a scheme. Potential applicants should contact their proposed host department as soon as possible to discuss their interest in holding an award at Oxford. You should also regularly check the University’s Coordinated Bids website, which sets out the timetable and process for any internal prioritisation processes to select the Oxford candidates when restrictions apply.
The Lockey Fund
The Lockey Committee makes grants for attendance at overseas scientific conferences and symposia. The fund is aimed at academic and research staff who hold a doctorate and are members of Congregation, but applications are also considered from postdoctoral research workers etc. who are not members of Congregation. Applications should be submitted by the end of Seventh Week. Click here for more information and an application form.
College research fellowships
Where possible we will post information here about current college opportunities.
Colleges regularly offering JRFs in the sciences include:
Corpus Christi College: The College normally appoints two non-stipendiary JRFs a year, one in the humanities/social sciences and one in the sciences. Applicants should be close to completing their doctorate, or have obtained it within the last 2 years.
Kellogg College: Offer non-stipendiary junior research fellowships, typically advertised from September.
Linacre College: non-stipendiary junior research fellowships. Advertised annually in November/December, with interviews in spring.
Magdalen College: Fellowships by examination.
New College: Invite applications for stipendiary and one non-stipendiary junior research fellowships each year, typically in September. Please check college website.
Merton College, Christ Church and St John’s College invite applications for stipendiary junior research fellowships each year, typically in September. Please check college websites.
The Queen’s College: 'extraordinary' (i.e. non-stipendiary) Junior Research Fellowships. Check website for opportunities.
St. Catherine’s College: Check website for opportunities.
St. Hilda’s College: Stipendiary Junior Research Fellowships. Usually advertised from September.
Wolfson College: Non-stipendiary JRFs and RFs in Clinical and Non-Clinical Sciences, usually advertised from September.
Wadham College: Research Associates
Opportunities are also advertised on the Conference of Colleges site.
General fellowships, available in all areas
AXA Junior Research Fellowship: The mission of the AXA Research Fund is to fund academic research dedicated to a better understanding of important hazards, risks and threats and current global societal challenges within three clusters: socioeconomic risks, environmental risks and life risks. Each year, the AXA Research Fund offers twenty-five (25) Post-Doctoral Fellowships to outstanding researchers.
Daphne Jackson Trust (Royal Society): designed to return STEM professionals to their careers after a break. Fellows normally carry out their research part-time over 2 years, in a university or research establishment in the UK.
Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowships: for outstanding scientists in the UK at an early stage of their research career who require a flexible working pattern due to personal circumstances such as parenting or caring responsibilities or health issues.
European Research Council: Starting Grants
Leverhulme Trust: Early Career Fellowships to provide career development opportunities for those who are at a relatively early stage of their academic careers, but who have a proven record of research.
Marie Skłodowska-Curie: Research Fellowship Programme.
The Royal Society: Early Career and Senior Career Fellowships
Schlumberger Foundation, Faculty for the Future: supports women from developing countries in their pursuit of advanced graduate studies in STEM at leading universities worldwide.
Wiener-Anspach Postdoctoral Fellowships at the Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB): The Foundation awards grants to postdoctoral researchers from Oxford or Cambridge University who wish to undertake research at the ULB. These grants are open to researchers in any field. Deadline for 2019 applications is Monday 18th March 2019.
The BBSRC has four schemes
- Future Leader Fellowship: Support for researchers to undertake research and gain leadership skills
- David Phillips Fellowships: World class early career scientists
- Returners to Research Fellowships: Support for those returning from a career break
- Enterprise Fellowships: Provides a salary and training to develop a commercial proposition
EPSRC Fellowships scheme: supports three career stages - postdoctoral, early career and established career.
NERC: Independent Research Fellowships provide opportunities for outstanding early-career environmental scientists to devote their time to producing research of international importance; developing their research careers and research groups; and developing into recognised science leaders.
Discipline-specific awards from Learned Societies and Trusts
British Heart Foundation: provide personal support for clinical and non-clinical cardiovascular researchers at all stages of their career; grants for short and long term research projects, essential infrastructure and strategic initiatives.
European Southern Observatory: the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere awards several postdoctoral fellowships each year in both Germany and Chile.
London Mathematical Society, Grace Chisholm Young Fellowships: offers two fellowships each year to mathematicians who need support when their mathematical career is interrupted by family responsibilities, relocation of partner, or other similar circumstance, making possible some continuous mathematical activity, so enabling the fellow to be in a position to apply for posts when circumstances allow.
L'Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science fellowships: recognises the achievements and contributions of exceptional females across the globe, by awarding promising scientists with Fellowships to help further their research.
Royal Academy of Engineering - Research Fellowships: designed to promote excellence in engineering. They provide support for high-quality engineers and encourage them to develop successful academic research careers.
Royal Astronomical Society: including the Norman Lockyer and RAS Research Fellowships.
Schmidt Science Fellows, in partnership with the Rhodes Trust: fourteen-month programme to broaden scientific and societal horizons of graduate students between finishing their DPhil and starting a research career. Information about current opportunities will be linked here when available.
Violette and Samuel Glasstone Research Fellowships in Science: provide the opportunity to conduct original research at Oxford for outstanding scientists at an early stage of their research career. Fellowships can be held in the departments of Chemistry, Computer Science, Engineering, Materials, Mathematics, Physics, Plant Sciences and Statistics.
Wellcome Trust Biomedical Fellowships: The Trust offer a portfolio of personal support schemes to cover the key stages of a research career. All awardees are provided with a salary or stipend, and a budget for research expenses. Support is available for basic biomedical scientists, clinically qualified investigators (including clinical psychologists, dentists and veterinarians) and public health researchers. We also support low- and middle-income country scientists working in public health or tropical medicine.
Support for making fellowship and grant applications is provided centrally by Research Services, and locally in your department.
The University’s central Research Services provide advice on finding and applying for funding, costing and pricing grant applications, managing awards, knowledge exchange, and research integrity.
Your PI or the research facilitator in your department will be able to advise you on making applications for a research grant or fellowship.