Founders Fund grants for PHD Students

Purpose of Founders Fund Grants

The grants from this fund are to financially assist PhD students undertaking research in the field of International relations/Studies during the final stages of writing up their thesis (normally in their fourth year). Only current BISA postgraduate members are eligible to apply. Priority will be given to applicants who can demonstrate that the grant will help them to finish within the short to medium term (3-6 months) and who receive strong support from their supervisors. The key criteria are:

a) the academic quality of the PhD research;
b) the accuracy of the timetable for completion;
c) Financial need.

Grants can be of up to £500 depending on the number of applications and are intended to help with the direct costs incurred in the final stages of the thesis (eg. fees, living or travel costs). The grants may not be used for funding fieldwork trips, holidays etc and can only be applied for once.  The total fund is £3000 per annum.

How To Apply

Application is via online webform which should include the following information:

  1. Name, Address, Institutional and Departmental affiliation and contact details
  2. BISA membership number
  3. Name of PhD supervisor
  4. Thesis title
  5. Thesis topic/research area including details of what the grant would be used for and of existing sources of financial support (200 words)
  6. In addition, applicants should ask their institution (supervisor) for a short letter of support max 200 words, please ensure it is signed and on university headed paper. 
The letter of support should:
introduce the applicant, the letter author should also briefly introduce themselves and detail the relationship i.e. supervisor, head of department, head of research etc.
confirm the Applicant’s attitude to studying and research.
detail the Applicants academic record and commitment
makes the case for funding i.e. confirms there is no institutional or other funding available for the applicant 
Confirms the applicant is still registered as a PHD student
Makes the case for the award

The deadline for application is 4.00pm on Wednesday 14th November 2018. [ NB No further applications will be accepted after this deadline, applications are date and time stamped] Email acknowledgements will be sent out once the deadline is passed so we can check final applications and raise any matters that are unclear and request any missing documents not captured by our system. 

Response to Applications

Successful applicants will be contacted via email. Applicants who have not heard anything by 14th December 2018 can assume that their application was not successful. Apologies but feedback cannot be provided.

If you have any queries about this award, please contact the BISA office

Apply for Founders Fund Award

Apply Here

Amend an Existing Application


British International Studies Association


Charity No:1151260
Company no: 8422260
Registered office: University Of Birmingham Room 650, 6th Floor, Muirhead Tower, Edgbaston, Birmingham, England, B15 2TT