postdoc funding


Hi I am in humanities, and due to submit end of the year. I have an idea of a potential postdoc idea, and some funding spurces. My question is, when would i approach these bodies? Also, at what stage do you approach a university? And do these fundings include living costs? I have no idea how it all works, so any help appreciated!


For the major funding bodies in science, I think their funding application turn around times are 1 year from the end of the deadline, which will vary by institution. I'm assuming this is similar for the humanities.

If you are writing your own grant, you can write in salaries required in the same way you would ask for travel/equipment costs to be funded.


Do you approach a university before or after trying to secure funding?


Typically, it's the academic(s) you want to work with that you approach first to know if they are willing to mentor you during your post-doc. Once that's been agreed in principle, the academic(s) notifies the department which then supports your application (the support may be financial in nature, f.i., the Leverhulme Early Careers expects the academic unit/department to contribute a % of the wages; it could also be expertise e.g. a letter to confirm that there are senior academics to mentor your post-doc work, etc, etc). The funding body would need to satisfy itself that the needed resources (financial, human, etc) are in place to facilitate the candidate's work.


Hi happyclappy,

I completed my Humanities PhD this year and applied (unsuccessfully) for a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship. As bongoboy says, you approach the institution/supporting academic first and only if they give you the OK can you apply to the funding body. The way it seems to work is this:

1. October-December of the year before entry: departments which are willing to support Leverhulme ECF applications will often issue a call for applications around this time. At this stage, you are supposed to first contact an academic at one of these departments whose research interests are the best fit for your own, send them details of your proposal and ask if they are willing and able to mentor you if your application is successful. If you get an initial approval from an academic, you send an initial application to the institution (usually a 1-2 page proposal and a CV).

2. December-January: departments review all the applications they have received and select the best applications - these candidates will then be able to send their full applications in to the Leverhulme Trust. The deadline for this this year is early March. For Leverhulme and I think for many other funding bodies, your application will be rejected if you have not submitted your thesis by the deadline - so if you submit before next March, you will be eligible for a fellowship to begin in 2015, for which you will be sending out your proposal at the end of the calendar year (November-December 2014).

3. I haven't got past the second stage but I gather that interviews/decisions take place in the early summer - so by June you know if you have been ultimately successful.