The Wellcome Early-Career Awards for International Researchers (£400,000)

Opportunity Detail

  • Language Requirement Not required
  • Gender MaleFemale
  • Level Research
  • Eligible Region/Countries

    All Countries

    Sponsored links
  • Medium of Instruction English
  • Field of study Health
  • Opportunity ID 61914
  • Funding Type Fully Funded
  • Duration 5 Years

Opportunity Description

The Wellcome Trust funds early-career international researchers from any discipline ready to develop their research identity. Through their projects, they can improve human life, health, and well-being. By the end of the program, the researchers will lead their independent projects.

This program is mainly for those who design, plan, and deliver innovative research projects that aim to advance understanding in their field of career or develop methodologies, frameworks, tools, and techniques that could benefit health-related research.

These awards aim to expand early-career researchers’ technical skills, research methodologies, or frameworks and to support building a cooperative network with other researchers. This Award also seeks to develop the management skills of researchers, advance their understanding of how to complete research responsibly, and promote an inclusive culture.

Sponsored links

Brief Details of the Awards

Application Opens: 22 May 2024

Applications Deadline: 01 October 2024 (17:00 BST)

Shortlisting: December 2024

Interviews: 11-13 March 2025

Organization: Wellcome Trust

Location: UK

Gender: Male/Female

Funding Type: Fully-funded

Eligible Countries: All

Administrating Organization Location:

Program Duration: 5 years

Language Required: English

Fields: Health

Benefits of the Wellcome Early-Career Awards

Grant holders can benefit from a salary determined by the host organization and up to £400,000 for research expenses. Researchers can also request overheads or overseas allowances, which won’t count against the £400,000 limit for research expenses. Grant holders are allowed to ask for the following costs but must justify the prices in their application:

  • A basic salary from the host organization
  • Relocation allowance and costs
  • Staff salary and expenses
  • Continuing professional development and training
  • Materials and consumables
  • Animals required for tests
  • Equipment such as computers and other facilities
  • Access charges
  • Overheads
  • Travel and subsistence
  • Overseas allowances
  • Fieldwork expenses
  • Inflation allowance
  • Open access charges
  • Clinical research costs
  • Public engagement and patient involvement costs
  • Contract research organizations
  • Other costs

Review More Awards:

The Wellcome Discovery Awards for International Established Researchers in the UK

Visual AIDS Call for Video Proposals: Day With(out) Art 2025

AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Awards 2024 ($5,000 Prize)

The Globethics Youth Leadership Award 2024 in Switzerland

Eligibility Requirements

You can apply if you are an early-career researcher ready to design and deliver an innovative research project that aims to:

  • Advanced understanding in your field
  • Develop methodologies, conceptual frameworks, tools, or techniques beneficial to health-related research

During the Award, You are Expected To:

  • Expand your technical skills and research methodologies
  • Build a collaborative network with other researchers
  • Develop your people management skills
  • Learn to conduct research responsibly and promote an inclusive culture

By the End of the Award, You Should Be Able To:

  • Lead your independent research program
  • Possess transferable skills for roles in or outside research, such as in industry or teaching

Lead Applicant Requirements:

  • Research Training: Completed a PhD or equivalent research degree, or at least four years of research experience if you haven’t started a PhD
  • Postdoctoral Experience: Up to three years of postdoctoral experience (consideration given for part-time work, career breaks, or significant time outside research)
  • Research Discipline: Changing research disciplines is acceptable if the shift is significant
  • Skills: Good understanding of research methodology and evidence of project delivery and analysis
  • Independence: Should not need close supervision, though training in new techniques may be required

Time Commitment:

  • At least 80% of your research time must be dedicated to the project
  • No more than 20% on non-research activities (up to 40% for clinical duties if in a clinical craft specialty)

Additional Eligibility Considerations:

  • Health Professionals: Must be registered and licensed by the relevant professional regulator
  • Based in Low- or Middle-Income Countries: Must hold a permanent, open-ended, or long-term rolling contract
  • Career Breaks: Consideration given for time away from research (e.g., parental leave, long-term sick leave)

Support Roles:

  • Sponsor: Must hold an established post at your administering organization, guarantee space and resources, and ensure a supportive research environment
  • Mentor: Should have a track record in training and mentorship, guiding your research career and personal development

Additional Participants:

  • Collaborators: Can support the project by sharing facilities, resources, and expertise. They are not paid but can have their expenses covered.

Note: All eligibility criteria apply uniformly. Consider the Career Development Award if you need significant supervision or retraining.

Who Can’t Apply

You are not eligible to apply if:

  • Unless it is not research-based, you hold an existing tenured (salaried) post for the award’s duration (except in low—or middle-income countries) and relinquish it for the Early-Career Award.
  • You have a pending application to this scheme.
  • You hold or have held, an equivalent award at this career stage (excluding short-term funding).

Requirements for the Host Organization

The administering organization is responsible for submitting your final application to Wellcome and managing the grant finances.

Eligible Organisations:

  • Located in the UK, Republic of Ireland, or a low- or middle-income country (excluding India and mainland China)
  • Types of organizations: higher education institutions, research institutes, non-academic healthcare organizations, not-for-profits


  • Must adhere to Wellcome’s grant conditions
  • UK organizations must follow the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers
  • Non-UK organizations should follow the principles of the Concordat

Key Expectations:

  • Provide you and grant staff with ten days per year for training and continuing professional development (CPD)
  • Offer onboarding, embedding, and planning support.
  • Ensure you have the same status and benefits as other academic staff of similar seniority
  • Core-funded research organizations should not replace or reduce existing support with this award

Research Environment:

  • Should offer the training, resources, and experience needed to deliver your project and develop your skills
  • Moving to a new research environment or group is encouraged but not mandatory

Assessment Criteria

The selection committee will evaluate your research proposal, skills and experience, and research environment. The assessment weightings at the interview stage are:

Research Proposal (50%)

To be competitive, your research proposal should be:

  • Bold: Aiming for a significant shift in understanding or advancing methodologies, frameworks, tools, or techniques with the potential to stimulate innovative research.
  • Creative: Proposing novel approaches, developing and testing new concepts, methods, or technologies, or combining existing ideas in new ways.
  • High Quality: Well-designed, clear, evidence-supported, with feasible outcomes and outputs.

Skills and Experience (25%)

The Committee will review:

  • Your previous research outputs and contributions to the research community.
  • Your research skills, experience with different methodologies, and development plans during the award.
  • You plan to develop management skills and capabilities for leading a research program.

Research Environment (25%)

The Committee will review:

  • How does your research environment support your research program and development as a researcher?
  • How your administering organization aids in developing your project and management skills.
  • Your contribution to fostering a positive and inclusive research culture.

Research Areas

your area of research can be in the following fields:

How to Apply?

Apply via the Wellcome Funding platform linked below. Log in or create an account to save and return to your application anytime. You need to provide:

  • A letter of support from your current supervisor.
  • A letter from the person overseeing your clinical training if applicable.
  • A letter from your organization’s finance director if requesting overheads.

Note: Ensure you leave enough time to complete your application and have your organization review and submit it.

Application Process

  1. Before You Apply, read all instructions thoroughly.
  2. Submit to Administering Organization
    • Complete your application on Wellcome Funding.
    • Submit it to the ‘authorized approver’ at your organization in time for them to review and submit it by the deadline.
  3. Approval and Submission
    • Your organization must submit your application by 17:00 (GMT/BST) on the day of the deadline.
    • Check for any impact from industrial action at UK universities and agree on a submission timeline with your organization.
  4. Shortlisting
    • Wellcome will check your eligibility and how well your application meets the scheme’s aims.
    • An Early-Career Advisory Group relevant to your research area will review your application.
    • If shortlisted, you will go for an interview.
  5. Interviews
    • It occurs at the Wellcome offices in London, with remote participation available if needed.
    • You will give a presentation and answer questions from the Early-Career Interview Committee.
  6. Funding Decision
    • Made by the Discovery Research Decision Board.
    • You will get a notification of the decision by email, followed by a detailed letter explaining the reasons.


Apply Now



Read more details about the Wellcome Early-Career Awards on the Wellcome Trust website.


Find More Awards:

AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Awards 2024 ($5,000 Prize)

NAAEE Global E-STEM Excellence Awards 2024-2025

The Kenneth C. Frazier Award 2024 for Maternal Health Equity

Sponsored links