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Engineering Biology in Cambridge


Full details for this round are not yet available as the call will open on 14 June 2023. This communication is to bring the scheme to your attention to allow candidates sufficient time to prepare strong applications. The University’s internal selection process for this round will be confirmed once the call opens.

The Royal Society is holding a webinar for this call on Tuesday 6 June from 13:00-14:15 BST. This webinar will provide research support staff with the chance to learn more about the schemes and application process and will also provide prospective applicants with insight into how to make their applications as competitive as possible. The webinar is available by registration only, which must be done by Friday 2 June at 17:00 BST. You can register for the webinar via Eventbrite and joining instructions will be provided on Monday 5 June via email.

The Royal Society plans to open Round 3 of their 2022-23 Wolfson Fellowships scheme on 14 June 2023. The programme is to enable UK Universities to strategically recruit and attract outstanding international researchers to the UK’s scientific community. This can be achieved through one of the following routes:

This strand focuses entirely on recruitment, enabling UK institutions to enhance their offering with a £300,000 fellowship award to international research leaders wishing to relocate to the UK. The funding can be used flexibly to conduct high-quality research as part of their start-up package. The funding can cover salary enhancement of up to 20%, research expenses at 100% fEC, research assistants at 80% fEC, 4-year PhD studentships, and other justified research costs.

This strand allows excellent international researchers a flexible 12-month sabbatical period at a UK university with an award of up to £125,000 to build and develop international collaborations and networks with the host UK university. The fellowship can be held full time for 1 year or flexibly over 2 years – but the total period of the sabbatical must always amount to 12 months. The funding can cover bursary for visiting fellows up to £80k, research expenses including small equipment up to £10k, and other justified costs.

Eligibility for both strands:

  • Applicants can be of any nationality.
  • Research must be within the eligible subjects.
  • The applicant must be currently based overseas.
  • Candidates should be talented researchers with a proven track record for high quality scientific research. This may include, as appropriate: a strong publication record, being invited to conferences as keynote speaker and evidence of scientific leadership and/or supervising or mentoring junior researchers.
  • 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.

Note on funding:

Please note that in the case of the salary enhancement element of the main strand and the ‘bursary’ element of the visiting fellowship strand, this funding cannot be used to cover salary on-costs (employers NI and pension contributions) or Estates and Indirect costs directly associated with the Fellow.

University Internal selection:

Institutions nominating more than one candidate across both strands will be expected to: (1) make a strong case against the organisation’s strategic priorities, (2) outline internal selection process to the funder, (3) providing a ranking of proposals where more than one is submitted to the same strand of the call, and (4) detail what other support (direct or in-kind) will be provided to the applicants. Therefore, this call will be managed according to the University’s restricted calls procedure.

We anticipate asking interested departments to complete an online selection form by 12 noon on 23rd June. The full requirements for the internal process as well as the link to the online submission form will be provided once the call opens in June. For now, for your information and convenience, the attached document outlines the questions we anticipate requesting for the internal selection process. Please note that due to the funder’s request for ranking of proposals, the internal deadline will be enforced and any late applications will need to be held back to the next round of funding.

Assessment criteria:

Internal applications will be assessed using the Royal Society criteria:

  • Candidate’s track record.
  • The strength of the strategic case for the nomination and fit to the University’s research strategy.
  • The high quality and originality of the candidate’s proposed research vision – including the potential impact of the research and benefit to the UK science base.
  • Visiting Fellowships only: The mutual benefit to the University and the researcher, including potential to develop ongoing international collaborative links, supervise or mentor junior researchers, share ideas and practice.

Funder’s indicative deadline: 09 August 2023