Pilot scheme launched to help MRC fellows secure leadership positions


The Medical Research Council (MRC) has launched a new pilot funding scheme, aiming to support researchers through difficult transition periods in their careers.

MRC writes:

The Transition Support pilot scheme will help facilitate the transition of existing intermediate MRC fellows to research leadership positions.

We are committed to supporting researchers across all stages of their career and have a strategic focus on supporting researchers through difficult transition periods via our existing Transition to Independence and Transition to Leadership fellowship schemes.

But we understand that some fellows need further flexibility (PDF, 927KB) to transition into secure posts beyond their fellowships – to help maximise the potential of their work and the MRC’s investment, and to go on to establish substantive research programmes.

The pilot will provide one to three years’ worth of financial support to candidates who have made good progress with their fellowship project but have not yet achieved outputs suitable to secure follow-on funding via other routes. The scheme requires a 50% funding contribution from a named host research organisation and their commitment to provide a permanent position at the end of the funding period.

The new scheme will target fellows who are nearing the end of their award and are at risk of being unable to realise the full potential of their fellowship. While not a fellowship in its own right, the scheme will provide financial and job security so that fellows can deliver outputs for securing their next substantive research grant.

The scheme is currently only open to existing MRC Career Development Award or Clinician Scientist Fellowship holders.

We anticipate that typical applicants will be in the final 12-18 months of their fellowship but this is not a requirement. Fellows who already have an open-ended or permanent position at their research organisation are eligible to apply.

We have committed £4 million to pilot this scheme. The deadline for applications is 16:00 GMT+1 on 26 September 2019. Applications will be assessed by members of the Clinical and Non-Clinical Panels, with decisions on funding being made in early December 2019.

Further details about the Transition Support pilot scheme and information about how to apply can be found on the Transition Support funding call page.

To read more information, click here.

The Medical Research Council has been at the forefront of scientific discovery to improve human health. Founded in 1913 to tackle tuberculosis, the MRC now invests taxpayers’ money in some of the best medical research in the world across every area of health.

MRC [Medical Research Council]