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NIHR Development and Skills Enhancement Award
The Development and Skills Enhancement Award (DSE) is a post-doctoral award aimed at supporting NIHR Academy Members who wish to gain specific skills and experience to underpin the next phase of their research career. 
Host institution
Higher Education Institution in England, NHS Body or other provider of health and/or care services. 
Applicants must be a current member of the NIHR Academy.
For Clinical academic applicants, applicants my have completed their relevant pre-registration training. 
Applicants must hold a relevant PhD or MD, or have submitted a thesis for examination at the time of application.

If you are an NIHR Academy member who has recently completed, or will soon complete, a funding Award, you may be eligible for the Development and Skills Enhancement (DSE) Award, which is now open for applications.

We are pleased to let you know, going forward in a change from previous rounds, applicants are now no longer required to be NIHR Academy members in order to apply for the award and the requirement for matched funding has also been removed. The DSE award will now also be open to applications all year round in order to increase flexibility, with 3 submission windows and further information regarding the changes can be found here. 

The DSE award is aimed at supporting NIHR Academy members to gain specific skills and experience to support the next phase of their research career.  

This post-doctoral opportunity is available for individuals based within NIHR Infrastructure/ Schools who meet the criteria to be an NIHR Academy member, and is open three times a year. 

The award can be used to build a bespoke training programme to develop skills and experience in any academic area of expertise. Although not limited to these themes, the NIHR is particularly keen to see applications from people wishing to develop skills in:

  • Health Data Science (case study)
  • Clinical Trials
  • Entrepreneurship and working with industry.  

NIHR will cover the salary of the applicant for up to 1 year, training and development costs up to £5,000, conference costs up to £1,000 and mentorship costs up to £1,000. Full Economic Costings (FEC) are not covered by this award. 

For tips on applying for the DSE Award watch the recorded webinar.


Opens: 9 May 2023

Closes: 28 July 2023 (1pm)

Start dates: December 2023 - March 2024

Further guidance on the Development and Skills Enhancement Award can be found on the NIHR website.