skip to content

University of Cambridge/ Wellcome Trust Junior Interdisciplinary Fellowships

The deadline for this scheme is 4th January 2017

Introduction and aims of the Scheme

Applications are invited for the next round of University of Cambridge/ Wellcome Trust Junior Interdisciplinary Fellowships.

The scheme is aimed at post-doctoral candidates with backgrounds in the physical sciences (incl. engineering, mathematics and computer sciences) who wish to gain experience in the application of their research to solve problems in the basic biological and biomedical sciences.

The fellowships are intended to provide opportunities for award holders to gain experience in applying biological approaches, and/or apply novel theoretical or experimental techniques from the physical sciences to address biological problems. In addition, it is hoped that this scheme will foster longer-term collaborations between Principal Investigators from the physical and life sciences disciplines within the University of Cambridge.

Research projects must fall within the broad remit of the Wellcome Trust. The research must be undertaken in laboratories within the School of the Biological Sciences or the School of Clinical Medicine.

Applications from post-doctoral candidates with a background in the life sciences wishing to gain experience working in the physical sciences may also be considered. It is expected that, in these cases, the host lab has a proven track record of life/physical sciences interdisciplinary research.

A list of previous awardees can be found here.


Successful candidates will have a PhD in the physical sciences, mathematics, computing or engineering (or the life sciences, as noted above) and a strong track record appropriate for their career stage. Prior knowledge of biology is not required, but a willingness to work closely with biologists or clinical scientists is essential.

It is anticipated that each award holder will work with two Principal Investigators at the University of Cambridge, one in the physical sciences and the other in the life sciences, who will each provide appropriate guidance and support. Applications from previous awardees are permitted, although applicants must demonstrate how the previous and proposed research are clearly different projects.

For successful candidates not currently eligible to work in the UK a certificate of sponsorship will need to be applied for by the University. In this instance, applicants are expected to pre-discuss their case with their host group leader and departmental administrator/HR support to ensure that they are likely to fulfil the relevant Home Office requirements.


Junior Interdisciplinary Fellowships will be awarded for periods of up to two years. The salary will be in the range of £29,301-£38,183, depending upon experience.

This Scheme is funded jointly between the Wellcome Trust and the University of Cambridge. Please be aware that the cost of the Fellowship (including on-costs and any research consumables requested) will be funded as follows:

  • 50% by the University of Cambridge Wellcome Trust award and 25% by the Host School (Clinical or Biological). The remaining 25% of the Fellowship is expected to be provided as a contribution from the Host Department or group in which the Fellowship is to be held. It is the applicant's responsibility to pre-agree this 25% contribution with their future department or supervisor. Only in exceptional circumstances, and on receipt of a compelling case as to why no contribution can be made, will other funding mechanisms be considered.
  • In instances where a candidate from the life sciences wishes to carry out a Fellowship in a physical sciences group, the host department is expected to provide 50% of the funding.

In addition to salary costs, applicants may request up to a maximum of £15,000 towards the costs of consumables.

Assessment Criteria

Applications will be evaluated by a scientific panel and the following criteria will be taken into account

  • Track record of the candidate (taking into account the career stage of the applicant)
  • Suitability of the project
  • Inter-disciplinarity of the project and novelty of collaboration
  • Appropriate linkages to Principal Investigators from different disciplines
  • Supportiveness of the environment

How to apply

The next deadline for applications is 4th January 2017
To apply, interested candidates should submit the following documents:

  • A completed application form
  • A short CV (including relevant publications)
  • A statement by the Host department or group in support of the proposed project, including confirmation of the provision of 25% of the funding (or 50% if the Fellowship is to be hosted within a physical sciences group) and a description of the host's involvement in the project.
  • The application form asks for the details of two referees who are familiar with the candidate's research. Applicants should arrange for their referees to email references directly to Dr Rosalyn Gregory in time for the application deadline.

Application deadline: Please send your application and supporting documents by email to Dr Rosalyn Gregory by 4th January 2017. You will be required to seek the approval of the Departmental Administrator of your host department in order for your application to be submitted. Please copy both the Departmental Administrator and the leader of your host group when you submit your application.

Project start date: Projects are expected to start within 3 months of the award date.

Contacts and guidance
If you have any queries about this call, please get in touch with:
Dr Rosalyn Gregory Email:
External: (+44)1223 766528
Internal: 66528