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Seed Awards in Medical Humanities and Social Science

"Regulation and Health"

Seed Awards help researchers develop compelling and innovative ideas that will go on to form part of larger grant applications to Wellcome or elsewhere.

The current funding round is on the theme of regulation and health.

Relationships between regulation and health: themed call for Seed Awards in Humanities and Social Science

For the current funding round of Seed Awards in Humanities and Social Science, we are only accepting applications that explore the relationships between regulation and health.

Rules, laws and guidelines affect how people deliver healthcare and biomedical research. 

Rapid and unexpected technological, social and political change can test regulations, sometimes to breaking point. We’re looking for innovative research proposals that explore this. 

Areas of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • how the regulation of heath has been experienced and understood in the past
  • how regulators prepare for unknown developments 
  • why regulation doesn’t always work 
  • promoting health by regulating how people behave
  • how ethical norms are translated into regulation 
  • alternatives to governments as regulators 
  • the interplay of regulatory regimes (for example at a national and international level)
  • regulation of drug research, production and distribution
  • regulation of health emergencies and crises.

We welcome research ideas from a range of humanities and social science disciplines.

Eligibility and suitability

Who can apply

You can apply for a Seed Award if you're a researcher who wants to develop a compelling and innovative idea that will go on to form part of a larger grant application to Wellcome or elsewhere.

Applications for the October 2017 deadline must explore the theme of regulation and health.

You must: 

  • have a PhD or the equivalent professional experience
  • be based at an eligible host organisation in the UK, Republic of Ireland or a low- or middle-income country (although collaborators can be based elsewhere)
  • have enough time to commit to the award.

The award is open to applicants with or without established academic posts.

We particularly encourage researchers who are at the start of their independent careers to apply.

You can have collaborators, but you can't submit a joint application with another person.

Research proposal

Seed Awards give researchers the opportunity to use innovative methodologies and carry out a broad range of activities, such as:

  • pilot and scoping studies
  • preliminary data gathering
  • proof-of-principle studies
  • planning sessions
  • collaborative network meetings. 

We will review:

  • your track record as a researcher, relative to your career stage, and your potential to lead a research programme in the future
  • the novelty and importance of your research idea to your field, and your approach to developing it
  • your expected research outcomes and how they will lead to a larger grant in the future
  • the feasibility of your proposal
  • the suitability of your research environment.

Who can't apply

You can’t apply if you:

  • currently hold a Seed Award (although you can apply for more in the future)
  • have another Wellcome Trust award, with two or more years remaining, or 18 months if it’s a fellowship
  • are currently undertaking a Master’s or a PhD
  • want support for an existing, rather than a new, research project
  • have a discrete project, with no follow-on plans.

What we offer

Seeds Awards are usually between £25,000 and £100,000. Most Seed Awards are for six to twelve months.

We'll pay your salary if you don’t have an established academic post.

All costs must be fully justified. Support can include:

  • a salary or research/teaching replacement
  • research expenses, including costs for a researcher or consultant
  • conference and meeting costs

What we don’t offer

Seed Awards cannot be used to: 

  • top up existing grants
  • fund part of a PhD or Master’s course
  • write up publications from previous awards and qualifications. 

We don't provide funds for directly allocated or indirect costs unless they're included on this page.

Application date
5 Oct 2017
6-12 months
Europe United Kingdom
Humanities Anthropology, Ethnology and Folklore Archaeology Architecture Art & Art History Classical Studies Digital Humanities History Linguistics Literature Media Studies Music & Musicology Philosophy Religion & Theology Social sciences Business and Administrative Sciences Communication Sciences Demography Economics Environmental Sciences Gender Studies Geography International Relations Law Pedagogic & Education Research Political science Psychology & Cognitive Sciences Social Anthropology Sociology
Required post-doc experience: 
between 0 and 99 years
Award granted
£ 25-100.000