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Early Career Research Fellowships

Develop your research career at the Department of Mathematics, University of York

We are keen to welcome outstanding researchers to join our community as Early Career Research Fellows. We have had outstanding success with fellowship applications in recent years, including European Union Marie Skłodowska-Curie, Leverhulme Early Career, Newton International, Royal Society University Research and Schlumberger Foundation fellowships.

The Department of Mathematics is housed within the world-class University of York, and combines leading mathematical and interdisciplinary research with high quality undergraduate and postgraduate teaching. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), 80 per cent of research activity in the Department was rated as internationally excellent.

We are dedicated to the development of researchers and their careers, with the University supporting the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers (an agreement between funders and employers of research staff to improve the employment and support for researchers and research careers in UK higher education). The University of York values the diversity of its members and is committed to the creation of a positive environment which is fair, welcoming and inclusive and where everyone is treated with dignity and respect. We encourage interest from people with a variety of backgrounds and experience; for example, people from sections of the community that are currently underrepresented in the Department, those with commitments that would benefit from flexible working, and people wishing to return to research after a career break.

The Department currently comprises approximately 60 academic and research staff and 130 graduate students (including PhD and MSc). Our principal areas of research are: AlgebraNumber TheoryGeometry and AnalysisMathematical Finance and Stochastic AnalysisMathematical Physics and Quantum InformationMathematical Biology and Chemistry; and Statistics and Probability.

How can we help

How can we help?

We can provide support for the development of your Fellowship application. This support can include: arranging for discussions/ meetings with appropriate academic staff; organising constructive comments from peer reviewers; arranging contact with specialists in intellectual property etc.; and administrative support. In some cases, we can also support visits to the Department to allow Fellowship applicants to spend a focused time on developing their proposal in collaboration with both academic and administrative staff via the York Mathematics Fellowship Development Bursary.

If you are interested in developing a Fellowship application with us, please first contact the member of staff in the department who you would like to act as an academic mentor/supervisor for your project (see our staff list). You can then complete this enquiry form, which asks for a short Research Outline (a maximum of approximately one page of A4), your Academic CV, and explanation of why our department would be an ideal place to conduct your proposed project.

If you have any questions about holding a fellowship with our department, please contact: maths-research@york.ac.uk.

Fellowship Opportunities

What Fellowship opportunities are there?

Some early career fellowship schemes that are common in our area of research are listed below, grouped by typical expereince-level.
 

Fellowships for those finishing their PhD: 

London Mathematical Society (LMS) Early Career Fellowships
These fellowships support early career mathematicians in the transition between PhD and a postdoctoral position. The London Mathematical Society offers up to 8 Fellowships of between 3 and 6 months to mathematicians who have recently or will shortly receive their PhD.  The award will be calculated at £1,200 per month plus a travel allowance. The fellowships may be held at one or more institutions but not normally at the institution where the fellow received their PhD. At the time of closing date applicants must be UK residents.
 

Fellowships for those working towards becoming independent researchers:

EPSRC Fellowships (Postdoctoral)
EPSRC fellowships support talented and ambitious researchers to deliver research excellence and lead our research base in the evolution of a modern working culture. Their fellowships provide applicants with the flexibility and freedom to design a package that fits their career ambitions, research needs and personal development requirements. These postdoctoral fellowships are for up to 3 years in duration.
 
Marie Skłodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowships
Marie Skłodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowships support early career researchers who have received their PhD (or have equivalent experience if you are based outside of academia) by the time of the deadline. These fellowships support mobility; to be hosted at the University of York for the two year fellowship, you must not have been resident in the UK for more than 12 months in the three years immediately prior to the call deadline.
 
Newton International Fellowships
Newton International Fellowships support the development and training of postdoctoral researchers at an early stage of their career from any country outside the UK, by providing an opportunity to work at a UK research institution for two years. Applicants should have no more than seven years active full-time postdoctoral experience at the time of application.
 
Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 Research Fellowships
These fellowships give early career scientists of exceptional promise the opportunity to conduct a research project of their own instigation; an ultimate objective is to contribute to the knowledge base required for a healthy and innovative national culture. Around eight awards are made each year. Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 Research Fellowships are suitable for candidates who have 3 years or less post-doctoral research experience.
 
Stephen Hawking Fellowships
Stephen Hawking fellowships support and develop the next generation of visionary scientists in theoretical physics at the beginning of their career. These annual calls will continue until 2024, with each call looking to fund up to 10 fellowships. The funding is delivered jointly by EPSRC and STFC.
 
Schlumberger Foundation Faculty for the Future Fellowships
The Faculty for the Future program, launched in 2004, awards fellowships to women from developing and emerging economies to pursue PhD or Post-doctoral research in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields at leading universities worldwide.

Fellowships for independent researchers:

EPSRC Fellowships (Open)
EPSRC fellowships support talented and ambitious researchers to deliver research excellence and lead our research base in the evolution of a modern working culture. Their fellowships provide applicants with the flexibility and freedom to design a package that fits their career ambitions, research needs and personal development requirements. These postdoctoral fellowships are for up to 5 years in duration.
 
Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowships
Fellowships are intended for early career researchers, with a research record but who have not yet held a full-time permanent academic post, to undertake a significant piece of publishable work. Fellowships are tenable for 3 years on a full-time basis. 
 
Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowships
Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowships offer a recognised first step into an independent research career for outstanding postdoctoral scientists who require a flexible working pattern due to personal circumstances, such as caring responsibilities or health issues.
 
Royal Society University Research Fellowships
University Research Fellowships are for outstanding scientists who are in the early stages of their research career and have the potential to become leaders in their field. These long term fellowships provide the opportunity and freedom to build an independent research career in the UK or Republic of Ireland and pursue cutting-edge scientific research.
 

Fellowships for re-entry into research:

Daphne Jackson Trust Fellowships

These fellowships offer researchers the opportunity to return to a research career after a break of two or more years for a family, health or caring reason. By combining a personsalised retraining programme with a challenging research project, Daphne Jackson Trust Fellowships provide a vital opportunity for those looking to return to a research career. Fellowships are flexible and part-time, usually completed over two years at 0.5 FTE. They consist of a challenging research project and at least 100 hours of retraining per year.

You can find a broader list of available fellowships at the University of York Fellowships webpage, and we are happy to talk to you about potential options (please contact maths-research@york.ac.uk).

Our Fellowship Holders

Fellowship holders at Department of Mathematics

Some of our past and present Fellows include:

Dr Haralampos Geranios working on ‘Problems in Modular Representation Theory of General Linear Groups’, 2017-2022, University Research Fellowship, The Royal Society.

Dr Matthew Pusey working on better understanding of the formalism of quantum theory, until 2021, Research Fellowship, Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851

Dr George Constable working on ‘Uncertainty in Evolutionary Dynamics’, 2017 to 2020, Early Career Fellowship, Leverhulme Trust

Dr Paul Razafimandimby, working with Prof. Zdzislaw Brzezniak on ‘Stochastic Ericksen-Leslie Equations’ (SELEs), 2019-2021, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship.

Dr Nóra Szakács, was working with Prof. Victoria Gould on ‘Partial actions of monoids and partial reflections ‘ (PartAct), 2019-2021, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship.

Dr Fiona Bate working with Prof. Martin Bees on 'Optimising Biofuel Production in Spatial Models of Wastewater Treatment' 2019-2021 Daphne Jackson Research Fellow.

Dr Eleni Kontou, working with Prof. Chris Fewster on ‘Quantum Energy Conditions and Singularity Theorems’ (QuEST), 2017-2019, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship.

Dr Rida-E Zenab, working with Prof. Victoria Gould on ‘Factorisations of restriction semigroups’, 2017-2019, Faculty for the Future Fellowship program of Schlumberger Foundation.

Dr Munazza Naz, working with Prof. Victoria Gould on the ‘Study of the Semigroup Type Properties of the Set of all n x n Matrices over Tropical Semiring’, 2016-2018, Faculty for the Future Fellowship program of Schlumberger Foundation.

Contact

Who should I contact?

If you're interested in joining us, or have any questions about the process, please contact us at maths-research@york.ac.uk.

Case Study

Dr Liz Dickinson

After completing my PhD and a short post-doctorate position, I took a 7-year career break to start a family. Over a catch-up coffee, my PhD supervisor encouraged me to apply to the Daphne Jackson Trust. This charity supports STEM researchers in returning to their careers following a career break. They offer a part-time fellowship and retraining that aims to build confidence and skills.

I enjoyed multivariate statistics and pattern recognition (“chemometrics”) during my PhD, so found an expert in these techniques on the University of York webpages. Prof. Julie Wilson's research covers a wide range of fascinating projects, including links to archaeology, analytical chemistry and collaborations with industry. I approached Julie, who was very encouraging, and was keen to act as supervisor for my Fellowship. Julie, the University of York, and the Daphne Jackson Trust were all very supportive during the application process, which took around 9 months to complete. My application was successful and I secured a two-year Fellowship to use chemometrics to analyse data from plant varieties exposed to drought and disease. My Fellowship was supported by the Departments of Mathematics and Chemistry, and was also in collaboration with Fera Science Ltd. This academic breadth and industrial partnership provided fantastic opportunities for retraining and reintegrating back into research.

The Department of Mathematics has been extremely welcoming and supportive. They've helped with personal development and getting back into academic life. I've been delighted to continue to work in the Department after my Fellowship. I'm currently a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) Associate, working with Julie and another industrial partner. The Department is very supportive of flexible working, and my current role is also part-time.
 
Since my Fellowship, more Daphne Jackson Fellows have started in the University of York and the Department. I would encourage anyone who is thinking of returning to research to make the first step of contacting the Department of Mathematics. I have thoroughly enjoyed returning to research here and think that the support offered has been invaluable. Plucking up the courage to make those first enquiries was one of the best decisions I ever made!
 
Liz Dickinson
Daphne Jackson Fellow
For more information on the Daphne Jackson Trust go to daphnejackson.org/
 

Dr Paul Razafimandimby

After completing my PhD in Mathematics in 2011, I held several postdoctoral positions in South Africa, Italy and Austria. In September 2016, I gained a lectureship position at the University of Pretoria, being promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2019.

I had started discussing the mathematical theory of nematic liquid crystal with Prof. Zdzislaw Brzezniak — an academic in the Department of Mathematics, who was the external examiner of my PhD thesis — in 2011. These discussions led to a three year research project with Prof. Erika Hausenblas at University of Leoben, funded by the Austria Science Fund, starting in 2013. This grant enabled me to continue my research in Austria and visit and collaborate with Prof. Brzezniak.

It was during these collaborative visits to University of York that the idea of applying for a Marie Sklodowska-Curie fellowship emerged. These two year fellowships are funded by the European Commission, and support the mobility of researchers who have a doctoral degree (or at least four years of full-time research experience) within and beyond Europe.

After our initial application was rejected, we revised and resubmitted our proposal the following year. This proposal was funded, and I started my fellowship in the Department of Mathematics in January 2019.

As well as the help that I received from Prof. Brzezniak and other academics, the Department's support staff were also very helpful. For example, during the development and writing of the proposal, they arranged for peer reviewers to provide feedback and comments, helped with the administration of the application, and provided me with tips and previous examples of successful applications. After the fellowship was awarded, they were also very helpful during the relocation to York. In summary, the Department of Mathematics has been very supportive both with my scientific and personal development.