Funding opportunity

Funding opportunity: Renewal scheme for current Future Leaders Fellows

Successful applicants to the Future Leaders Fellowships (FLF) scheme have the opportunity to extend their four-year fellowship by up to a further three years.

The renewal funding will continue to support the development of a leading-edge fellow and further their work to undertake adventurous, ambitious programmes that tackle difficult and novel challenges.

Please note that from meeting 10, academic-hosted applicants will apply through the new UK Research and Innovation Funding Service and non-academic hosted applicants through the Innovation Funding Service. You cannot apply through the Joint Electronic Submissions system.

Who can apply

This funding opportunity is available to current FLF award holders only.

What we're looking for

Renewal applications can be submitted within or across any areas of research or innovation covered by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).

The renewal project should be a continuation of the original FLF fellowship. However, it is recognised that the project will have developed and progressed, and a fellow may change the direction of their project over the period of the fellowship in response to new discoveries or techniques if required. This is to build on their own changing experience, or to reflect changing business requirements and market opportunities, and should be explained in the case for support.

A fellow may also request to move host organisation or sector where appropriate and justified.

The FLF renewal must not be used to request funds for a completely new, independent project, and must not be used as a substitute for no-cost extensions.

The renewal will be awarded if there is a prima facie case for progression, and the fellow is able to demonstrate this in their proposal.

The prima facie should demonstrate the following:

  • clear evidence of fellow development and leadership during the fellowship to date
  • contribution to the research and innovation landscape, including realisation of short-term impacts of the original proposal and how the fellow has responded to unforeseen challenges
  • a distinctive and outstanding research or innovation project, or both, with robust methodology
  • that the fellow articulates a continued route to realise potential and clearly demonstrates the added value of continuing the fellowship mechanism of support
  • that the host organisation has confirmed that an open-ended contract has been attained or described a definite route to an open-ended contract, which will be attainable by the completion of the fellowship

How to apply

For meeting nine applicants only, you must apply using the Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S) system. Applicants for meeting 10 and future meetings will not be able to apply on Je-S.

Academic-hosted applicants will apply through the new Funding Service and non-academic hosted applicants will apply through the Innovation Funding Service.

You can find advice on completing your application in:

We recommend you start your application early.

Your host organisation will also be able to provide advice and guidance.

How we will assess your application

An assessment panel will consider the applications based on whether a prima facie case for progression has been demonstrated. The prima facie is supported by the FLF renewal assessment criteria:

  • research and innovation excellence
  • fellow and their development
  • impact and strategic relevance
  • research and innovation environment and costs

Across all four factors assessed, a key issue will be whether the added value of continuing the fellowship mechanism of support is clearly demonstrated. For example, the continuing benefits from the scale, flexibility and duration of the fellowship funding offered is clear, as opposed to the benefits gained from standard project grant support.

For business applications, consideration of the added value will include, for example:

  • whether the previous outputs are maximised
  • whether the levels of risk involved in the project mean that the fellowship is continuing to support beyond the normal activity of the business

If a prima facie case for renewal is not agreed during the initial meeting, a formal discussion will be required. This will be with the fellow to determine whether the renewal award is awarded, and any questions raised by the panel will be shared prior to the discussion.

Further information may be sought from the host organisation should there be queries with regards to the host support or commitment to an open-ended position. We will aim to resolve this via email communication, a formal discussion may be held in exceptional circumstances.

Guidance on assessment

To fully understand how your application will be assessed, you should read the following attachments in the ‘additional info’ section:

  • renewal assessment criteria
  • renewal scheme assessment process flow chart

Outcomes and feedback

All fellows that apply for the renewal will receive feedback, which will be included with the system-generated email sent by the Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S) system with the final outcome.

Contact details

Get help with developing your proposal

For help and advice on costings and writing your proposal please contact your research office in the first instance, allowing sufficient time for your organisation’s submission process.

Ask about this funding opportunity

FLF Renewal Team


We aim to respond within five working days.

Get help with applying through Je-S



01793 444164

Opening times

Je-S helpdesk opening times


  • 1 March 2024
    Round nine and round 10 information added in the timeline. Info about the submission process updated in the summary and How to apply.

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