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The NIHR Schools for Primary Care Research (SPCR), Public Health Research (SPHR) and Social Care Research (SSCR) (“three Schools”) have joined together in a unique collaboration between leading academic centres in England to collaborate on a programme of work funded through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR):

Improving mental health and wellbeing in underserved populations through collaborative research

A key aspect of the programme is building research capacity.  To develop a critical mass of mental health research in underserved communities it is essential to build strong capacity with the expertise and local knowledge needed to make an impact. 

We aim to do this by establishing:

 -       Bespoke fellowship scheme to develop new research capacity in key topic areas and localities in need of capacity development

-       Masters/post-graduate training to increase research capability (watch this space for further details)

-       Dedicated service user, carer patient and public involvement and engagement expertise

-       Early career research forum


Applications are invited from health and care professionals working in mental health but without a strong track record of mental health research (including but not limited to social work, nursing, midwifery, pharmacy, public health practitioners, housing providers, care home managers, paramedics) and methodologists (including social scientists, statisticians, economists and evidence synthesis experts) wishing to develop research careers in the area spanned by this programme.

 There are 12 career development fellowships available: six with a starting salary of around £37k pa and six senior awards with starting salary of around £47k.   The award duration is between 24 and 30 months depending on the availability of the fellow.  Part time fellowships will be considered (0.6FTE minimum). Fellows will be based across the three Schools’ Departments to ensure they receive the academic support needed to develop a strong research career within the remit of this programme. Cross-institutional supervision and exchange placements will be encouraged. 

Once appointed fellows will have access to a research grant fund.



Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to make contact with a member of the relevant School members to discuss your proposed project and agree supervisory arrangements.

To apply for one of these fellowships, please complete and submit an application form and email it along with a short CV (two pages maximum) and a covering letter (one page maximum)  to by 12 noon on Thursday 7 October 2021.

Please review the guidance notes before submitting your application. 


13 September 2021


16 September 2021

Competition launch

7 October 2021 12 noon

Closing date for submission of applications

31 October 2021

Competition outcomes will be announced



Prospective applicants are encouraged to contact their local Research Design Service (RDS) for advice.

For general queries relating to the call, including queries relating to the administrative process of applying, please contact

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