These prestigious Fellowships are awarded for doctoral-level research programmes to selected exceptional graduates with the potential to make an outstanding contribution to industry.

Approximately eight awards are made each year to outstanding first degree graduates in engineering, science or medicine, one of which is designated the ERA Foundation Fellow in the electro-technology sector.

Fellowships are for a maximum of three years, subject to annual renewal.

At a glance

  • Funding valueA generous funding package of either 50% of salary and fees or enhanced stipend
  • Suitable for Applicants fromUK
  • DeadlineOn going
  • Funding provider(s)Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851

What it covers

(a) Company employed candidates

  1. 50% of the Fellow’s salary, including the employer’s share of national insurance and superannuation paid, up to a limit of £25,000 PA, reviewed annually.
  2. University fees paid up to normal levels for UK students.

(b) Nominated doctoral centre/CASE candidates

  1. An enhancement to the existing stipend of £2,000 PA.
  2. Additional funding of up to £15,000 PA to support non-capital expenditure that will enhance the research project may be available, subject to a compelling case being made.
  3. For those applying in the second year of their doctorate programme: in year 3 of the Fellowship (after graduation), if the Fellow is employed by the sponsoring company the award will be as (a)1 above, with the aim of supporting the Fellow’s transition to employment as well as publication and commercialisation of the EngD/industrial doctoral research. If the Fellow is not employed by the sponsoring company, funding for the third year will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Travel is encouraged and costs of up to £3,500 PA are paid in all cases.

An honorarium of £10,000 is paid to the university research department on completion to support the their research programme.

Applicable courses

This funding opportunity is applicable to PhD courses at Cranfield University. Please see the 'Who can apply' section for more information.

Who can apply

The awards are open to outstanding first degree graduates in engineering, science or medicine, either nominated directly through a sponsoring company or enrolled on a UK university EngD/industrial doctorate programme. Candidates from SMEs are particularly encouraged to apply. Please see the Industrial Fellowships terms and conditions on the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 website for full eligibility criteria.

How to apply

Applications should be made through the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 website.

The supporting documentation described below should be uploaded as PDF documents to accompany the application.

All applications should include:

  1. A description by the candidate of the proposed programme of work, including milestones and deliverables. This should show the balance of research and company activity together with costed travel plans;
  2. Letters of endorsement for the project, expressing support for the candidate from the intended Industrial Supervisor and Academic Supervisor. Considerable weight is given to these;
  3. Company profile and information (maximum four sides).

Applications through centres for doctoral training or CASE programmes must also include:

  1. A letter of nomination from the Centre Director or equivalent. Any request for additional funding under clause 8(b)(ii) should be clearly justified;
  2. A profile of the Centre for Doctoral Training (maximum four sides);
  3. A statement from the sponsoring company setting out the resources it will provide to support the research effort and the impact expected on its business;
  4. A statement from the candidate indicating plans for linking with and actively involving the sponsoring company in the proposed project.

It is the candidate's responsibility to ensure that the application has been completed according to the regulations, as the Commission will be unable to accept partially-completed applications. 

The deadline for applications is usually the end of January each year. Please check the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 website for more information.