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Research Funding

Funding both facilitates and accelerates historical research. It ensures that research objectives can be delivered whilst also serving as a catalyst to promote and support future researchers. From travel to staff costs, the remit of research funding can be broad and depend on the sponsor's conditions. These pages are designed to provide guidance for individuals who would like to apply for research funding.

Thinking of applying for research funding?

A description of the process of applying for a research grant through the Faculty of History (A Checklist of steps to take) can be found here.

If you are interested in applying for research funding, it is necessary to establish the following:

  • What do I need?

Consider what costs you could incur whilst carrying out your proposed research. For example, will you travel, do you need additional staff or equipment? Similarly, it is important to identify when you require funding.

  • Who should I apply to?

There is an array of sponsors who can offer research funding ( e.g fellowships, research grants or travel funds). Before applying, it necessary to check whether you satisfy the eligibility requirements.

Some of the main sponsors appear on the “Research Grants” link below. If you would like more information, please do not hesitate to e-mail - Faculty's primary e-mail address for general inquiries on research funding and projects.

  • When should I apply?

Consult the upcoming deadlines page and links below relating to types of funding for forthcoming deadlines.

Please note however that the application processes for funding schemes are increasingly sponsor specific and it is advisable to contact the or as early as possible to obtain specific advice on administrative issues.


Available Funding

  • Research Grants

A range of funding is available from all major sponsors.

For information on sponsors and funding opportunities please see the link: Research Grants.

  • Early Career Schemes

Fellowships and research grants from the AHRC, British Academy, EC, ESRC and Leverhulme Trust.

For information on sponsors and funding opportunities please see the link: Early Career Schemes.

  • Fellowships and Research Leave Schemes

Fellowships from the AHRC, British Academy, ESRC, Leverhulme Trust and Wellcome Trust. For further information, please see the link:  Fellowships and Research Leave Schemes.

  • Internal Research Funding

Some sponsors provide block funding to the University.  Competitions for funding are then staged either by the centre or by the Schools.  For further information please see the link: Internal Research Funding.

  • Conference and Travel Funding

Funding is available within the University for conference support and to cover travel costs. For further information, please see the link: Conference and Travel Funding .

Contact Us

Help is available in the Faculty of History for those wishing to make research grant applications.

From October 2016 Professor John Robertson and Dr Paul Warde have started as new Directors of Research. Their role division is based on 2 work strands: 'Projects and Impact' and 'Individual Research'.

Director of Research is responsible for facilitating your Individual Research - this means the range of subjects which interest you as a scholar, the specific research on which you are engaged now, and the forms in which you wish to publish.  At the same time, he will advise on and facilitate the adaptation of your research and publication to meet the requirements of 1) promotion and/or the enhancement of salary, and 2) the REF.  

Director of Research is responsible for Projects and Impact.  He can provide academic advice on composing project proposals, read and supply peer-review.

 is the Faculty’s Research Grants Administrator and offers help and advice in application process and the costing of research grants.

For all general queries relating to research funding, application process, costing or existing grants please e-mail 

Additional help is also available from the School of the Humanities and Social Sciences for those wishing to clarify their options and obtain support in writing academic proposals:

School’s Research Facilitator for EC and overseas funding.

School’s Research Facilitator for UK funding.


Useful links

University Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Research website (this website combines information about research and research support in the School of Arts and Humanities and the School of the Humanities and Social Sciences. The site provides an essential resource for staff about research funding, research support and research opportunities across the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Cambridge).

Research Professional website (this allows researchers to search for any source of funding eligible to UK institutions. Use of the database is free to all university members however you will be prompted to register).

University Research Operations Office website  (this website helps administrative and academic staff to understand the processes and requirements associated with research grants and contracts). 

The website explains university’s research policies in full. Two particular policies to note are as those concerning ETHICAL APPROVAL and OPEN ACCESS.

ETHICAL APPROVAL: If your research involves human participation or personal data ethical approval should be obtained. In such cases please contact the Research Director (Projects and Impact) . If it appears to be low risk research, ethical review can be provided at the Faculty level. Cases that are particularly complex or sensitive, or those presenting a potential conflict of interest, should be referred to the School of Humanities and Social Sciences Research Ethics Committee. The Committee aims to deliver a decision in approximately three weeks after you complete the Committee’s application form and provide details of your research proposal and participant information.

OPEN ACCESS: From 2014 the university is adopting a new policy with regards to open access. The policy has been introduced in order to prepare the University for the next ‘Research Excellence Framework’ (REF) exercise, expected in 2021 and to enable the university to comply with the open access policy of the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

The policy requires authors to upload their papers/manuscripts (to Cambridge’s institutional repository - Apollo) at the point at which a publisher has accepted the piece of work for publication, i.e. before a Copyright Transfer or Open Access Agreement has been signed with the publisher. HEFCE policy requires manuscripts to be uploaded no later than three months after publisher acceptance. HEFCE policy will enter into force from 1st April 2016; however the university wishes to ensure early adoption of best practice leads to no omissions of REF-eligible research.

The Open Access team within the university will liaise directly with the author to ensure that, once manuscripts are uploaded to the repository, the correct funder-specific open access policies and HEFCE policies are adhered to. Publisher embargoes will be respected.

Full details of the Open Access policy is available here

Any queries on the policy and how it may affect you as a researcher should be directed to the Open Access team at info@openaccess.cam.ac.uk.

£1 Million sign-off forms (School of the Humanities and Social Sciences):

Applications for research funding that are expected to exceed £1,000,000 must be authorised by the School of the Humanities and Social Sciences before the completed application is submitted for approval by the Research Operations Office.

The School office will review submissions every Tuesday. The School recommends that six weeks is allowed for the School to properly review and communicate decisions to applicants. This must be factored in to your timetable for making an application. Both applicants and the faculty will need to work together to complete the required submission form for the School. Please contact the or  at your earliest convenience.

A copy of the current submission form is available here.