Challenger Society for Marine Science

The Stepping Stone Research Bursary Scheme

The Stepping Stones scheme is designed to support career development of members of the UK marine science community who do not have current indefinite employment. The scheme can provide modest amounts of support (up to £1000 per grant) for activities designed to enhance the career prospects for researchers, but not to provide direct salary support.

Bursaries can be used for research related activities including but not limited to travel, collaborative visits, laboratory or field work and conference participation. Bursaries are open to PhD candidates (PhD thesis submitted) or post-doctoral researchers, particularly those seeking employment in a research environment post-qualification, and to active researchers between fixed term contracts. Applications from individuals holding permanent positions will not be considered.

Criteria

  1. The maximum amount that any individual can be allocated in any one funding round will be £1000. Individuals are only eligible to receive one bursary in any three year period.
  2. Applicants must provide evidence of recent research activity eg. publications, PhD studies, participation in research campaigns.
  3. Applications are not permitted from researchers holding permanent positions. Those holding fixed term contracts may apply up to 3 months before the end of their contract. Applications are welcome from active or recently active researchers that are currently unemployed
  4. Salary costs are not eligible to be covered.

Application Procedure

The application forms are available here and notes for guidance of applicants are  here

Applicants must provide:

  1. Evidence of recent research activity
  2. Evidence or statement of employment status
  3. Description of research activity applied for, including costings
  4. Benefit of research activity to both the applicant and marine science research and/or the marine science community
  5. A statement from a marine scientist referee in support of the application

Applications will be considered quarterly (deadlines:  February 15th, May 15th, August 15th and November 15th).
The society aims to fund four bursaries per year.
A bursary report must be submitted to the society within two months of the end of the research activity.
Funds will be released once the application has been approved. A statement of spend (including receipts) is required with the bursary report.


Past awardees
Anna Belcher 2016: US cruise in the Eastern Tropical North Pacific. Read about her experience at sea and the personal benefits she gained from the bursary on our blog page.

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