The Dean's Prize Awards

The Dean's Prize Awards is a Faculty-run programme offering funding for both clinical and non-clinical researchers who are looking to apply for externally funded, prestigious fellowships.

About the Dean's Prize

The goal of the awards is to provide pump-priming funds for both clinical, applied health and pure science researchers who are looking to apply for externally funded, prestigious fellowships, from UK national funding bodies such as UK Research & Innovation (UKRI), the Wellcome Trust (WT) or the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

This distinguished award is part of our programme focused on research culture and offers pump-prime funding to promote the careers of aspiring academic researchers by bridging that difficult career gap between excellent postdoctoral researcher and research independence.


We are offering salary plus up to £10,000 per annum support costs for two years. Applications for an external fellowship will be expected by the end of the first year, or early in the second year.

Fellows will be expected to secure substantial funding for their research and complete research outputs of international excellence.


The award is available for clinical, applied health and pure science applicants as a stepping stone to intermediate or senior level fellowship. All applicants should already hold a PhD.

While flexible, in broad terms, we anticipate pure science/applied health applicants will have 3-7 years of postdoctoral experience.

Hospital-based medical/clinical applicants

Hospital-based medical applicants will be about to complete or have just completed clinical specialist training or equivalent. However, we do understand that not everyone's circumstances/research career pathways are the same. You may have taken time off for maternity/paternity leave, or changed research direction for example.

We want you to apply at the best point in your career, when you are on an upward trajectory in terms of research outputs, when time and resources to focus on your research will enable you to develop externally funded applications.

For the hospital-based clinical/medical applicants, The University of Manchester will support basic salary up to 0.5 full-time equivalent (FTE) with the remaining 0.5 FTE salary reflecting clinical duties by the most appropriate NHS partner of the Manchester Academic Health Science Centre (MAHSC).

This clinical component of the salary needs to be agreed in principle by the relevant NHS Trust/MAHSC Partner prior to submission.

It is likely that successful candidates will have clear intellectual links to current Faculty members in order to benefit from appropriate mentorship, advice and support.

The award is open to internal candidates and those applying from outside the University.

If awarded, we expect your Dean's Prize to commence before 1 January 2024. However, if your proposal falls slightly outside of this, we would potentially consider this on an individual basis, if discussed prior to the submission date.

We were delighted that a total of five applicants were awarded a Dean's Prize fellowship last year. View summaries of their research (PDF).

How to apply

Please read the below guidance and apply by downloading and completing the application form.

Please submit the form by email to by 5pm on Tuesday 2 May 2023.

Dean's Prize Clinics

If you have any questions regarding the Dean's Prize, we will also be running Dean's Prize Clinics in April 2023. Please sign up to one of the sessions via the Eventbrite links below:

Dean's Prize launch event

A launch event will also take place via Zoom on Thursday 9 March, 4-5pm, where you will have the opportunity to hear about the scheme, see short presentations from successful Dean's Prize Fellows and ask any initial questions you may have.

Register now via Eventbrite.

Details of the Zoom link will be shared before the event to individuals who have registered.

Contact us

If you have any enquiries, please contact Kerrie Webb, Project Support Officer.