Early Career Researchers Fund

This fund provides financial support for early career researchers to attend international meetings and visit international facilities. Our aim is to broaden your professional development and maximise your potential.


Who can apply

  • Early career researchers in the first three years of paid employment in industry or academia. This could be full- or part-time employment. The qualifying period excludes career breaks.
  • Your primary role should be research or the application of physics.
  • You must be a member of the IOP and the event you wish to attend must relate to the group you are a member of. Find out more about joining our free groups.

How much you can apply for

You can apply for up to £300.

  • We will usually cover only part of the expense of attending a conference.
  • This funding is intended to supplement funding from other sources.
  • If you work for industry, the value of our support must be matched by funding from your employer or a third party.

Our groups have limited funds for bursaries and you may not receive the full amount you ask for. If you are not awarded the full amount, you can apply for further support for a different conference, up to a total of £300 a year.

We will consider funding for international IOP-organised events. Meetings organised by our groups are not covered by this funding because these are already subsidised by the IOP.

How to apply

Download an application form (DOC, 45.1KB) and email it to [email protected].

We consider applications on a quarterly basis after each of the following deadlines. Please send your application before:

  • 1 March
  • 1 June
  • 1 September
  • 1 December

Your application must reach us by the deadline that is at least three months before the conference you plan to attend. For example, for an event taking place in July, your application should reach us by 1 March.

We strongly recommend you apply as soon as possible. You do not need to know the outcome of an abstract submission to apply. We will make a decision within eight weeks of each closing date. If you do not hear from us after eight weeks, please do get in touch.

The IOP manages the application process and the relevant IOP group awards the bursary and decides its value. Please tell us the name of the group that you would like to consider your application.

We ask you to send us a report after the event. Grants are only made once the report has been received.

Travel risks

Bursaries are paid as a reimbursement of expenses properly incurred. Any travel is undertaken at the sole risk of the bursary recipient. The IOP has no liability in the event that travel is not possible, or is curtailed, or if the event you are attending is cancelled, postponed or abandoned, whether due to COVID-19 rules and restrictions, or any other reason. If you do not undertake your booked travel, the IOP reserves the right not to pay the bursary.

Recipients of bursaries should ensure that they have adequate travel insurance to cover situations where they are unable to travel, or have to change their travel plans, due to COVID-19 rules and restrictions, or due to any other reasons, and are therefore able to reclaim any expenses.

The IOP recommends that the risk of COVID-19 and other risks at all destinations, including transit countries, should be considered alongside the risks during the travel itself when deciding whether to apply for a bursary.

Latest government information on COVID-19:

NHS advice on how to stay safe and check your symptoms.

More information

Email: [email protected].