UKRI Stephen Hawking Fellowships


In recognition of Stephen Hawking’s exceptional contributions to scientific knowledge and popularisation of science, UKRI is supporting Fellowships, delivered jointly by STFC and EPSRC, to support and develop the next generation of visionary scientists in theoretical physics at the beginning of their careers.

The objectives of the scheme are:

  • To fund new high quality research and support the development and training of postdoctoral researchers in the field of theoretical physics.
  • To train a cohort of researchers with the skills to continue a legacy of public engagement in the field of theoretical physics.

The fellowships provide up to 4 years’ funding for fellows with a strong passion for curiosity-driven science that seek to challenge current assumptions, advance scientific knowledge and inspire the public through their discoveries. The funding also supports training on public engagement and scientific communication to develop skills to explain complex scientific ideas to wider audiences and with the aim of continuing Stephen Hawking’s work in bringing science into popular culture.

Proposals are welcomed from all areas of theoretical physics and areas of mathematics and computer sciences which underpin and contribute to the development of theoretical physics. The scope of the fellowships extends beyond Stephen Hawking’s active areas of research such as cosmology, general relativity and quantum gravity and UKRI invite other aspects of theoretical physics such as classical gravity, string theory, statistical physics, nuclear physics, particle physics, particle astrophysics, theoretical astronomy, solar and planetary physics.

Proposals are also welcome from across the fundamental mathematical and computer sciences where the applicant can demonstrate that the research will underpin these approaches and can directly build capability in the area of theoretical physics, such as quantum computing.

Deadline and Timescales (2020)

The assessment process for the Stephen Hawking Fellowships follows three stages, an Intent to Submit, independent review of Full Proposals and an Interview Stage. As yet the 2020 call has not yet been announced - we will update the timescales below when it is.

Should you wish to apply in 2020, please send a one page outline, CV and publication list to the Facilitation Team by 11th May 2020.

The Intent to Submit deadline for 2019 was 20th June and the Full Proposal deadline was 24th July - we currently expect similar dates for 2020.

Additional annual calls are expected from 2021 to 2023. Please contact the facilitation team if you wish to apply.