Applying for Fellowships

These are exciting times for the Department: our move to a new building on the College’s White City Campus in 2018 will allow us to make a number of new permanent appointments across all areas of Chemistry/Molecular Sciences.  We are interested in hearing from outstanding early career candidates who we can support in Fellowship applications and in developing their future career. If you are interested in applying for Fellowships sponsored by the Department, please submit an Expression of Interest (CV and 2-page summary of research plans) to chemfellowships@imperial.ac.uk

The Department welcomes Fellowship candidates from the UK and overseas. We are an Athena SWAN Gold Award winner and Stonewall Diversity Champion, and we seek to promote best practice and gender equality for all our members.

Fellowships

What we offer

The Department provides a highly supportive environment in which to develop your career; we currently host over 20 Fellows at all stages of career development, and a selection of Fellow profiles may be found at the bottom of this page.

In addition to advice and administrative support during the application process, we provide a dedicated academic mentor during your Fellowship, opportunities to expand your collaborative network within the Department and across the College and start-up assistance in the form of a fully-funded 3-year PhD studentship (for Fellowships of 3 years or more).

Particularly for Fellows starting out in independent research for the first time, we provide regular guidance on how best to grow your research profile through presentations and publication, and advice on developing your career. Most junior fellows will start out on a fixed-term contract. Your progress will be assessed at the half-way point of your fellowship, and you will be given detailed feedback on what you need to achieve in order to be a competitive candidate for a full Lectureship position in the Department. The Department has an outstanding track record of developing Fellows into permanent staff, and a majority of recent appointments to new Lectureships have come from the ranks of current fellows.

The application process

There is a wide range of Fellowships available from external funders, and also the flagship Imperial College Research Fellowship . Most of these opportunities are open to candidates of any nationality, but each has specific rules and regulations with respect to career stage (e.g. minimum or maximum number of years post-PhD). Information on current or recent Fellows and Fellowship opportunities may be found below.

Where appropriate, you are expected to contact a member of academic staff that is undertaking research in your area of interest as early as possible, to act as a sponsor during the application process. Alternatively, you may contact the Head of Department, Professor Alan Armstrong or the Director of Research Professor Ramon Vilar who will be able to suggest potential sponsors. This sponsor will submit your outline application, CV and a letter of support to the appropriate Chemistry Committee. If you are selected at this stage, you will be assisted in the preparation of a full application for submission to the appropriate funder(s).

Information on Fellowships

Profiles of current and recent Research Fellows

Prof Edward Tate: “I joined the department as a postdoctoral researcher in 2004, and was awarded a BBSRC David Phillips Research Fellowship in 2006. This 5-year fellowship enabled me to establish a vibrant independent research group in chemical biology at Imperial, and I was taken on as a permanent member of staff in 2009. The extra support I received from the Department through PhD studentships and provision of lab facilities and mentoring was outstanding, and I was given the opportunity to pick up skills and experience in teaching at my own pace.”

Dr Andrew Ashley "I joined Imperial College London in 2010 funded by a 3-year Imperial College Junior Research Fellowship (JRF), and jointly held a non-stipendiary Royal Commission of 1851 Research Fellowship at the same time. This was my first opportunity to undertake independent research and it enabled me to establish exciting results, attract additional funding from various funding bodies, and to define multiple future research directions and collaborations. In particular, the Imperial JRF scheme provided me with an appreciable grant to cultivate my own research group. I am very grateful for the mentoring from the Postdoctoral Development Centre, my JRF sponsor, and the Department of Chemistry, which were very important and always available. After two years I was successful in obtaining a Royal Society University Research Fellowship which has allowed me to develop novel, and highly challenging, catalytic methods for the hydrogenation of small molecules (e.g. dinitrogen and carbon dioxide) to useful products. The support of the Department was again extremely important in this success, which included the provision of an additional PhD studentship.”

Dr. Silvia Díez - González first joined the Department of Chemistry in 2009 as part of the first cohort of Imperial College Junior Research Fellows (JRFs). After 18 months as a Fellow, she was offered an Imperial College Lecturership in Catalysis for the development of novel organometallic complexes leading to better performing and more sustainable organic transformations.

“My arrival to the Department as a JRF has definitely set a landmark in my career. From the beginning I had the full support of my Department in order to establish myself as an independent researcher. Having total control on your scientific work and being able to count on the selfless advice of your Head of Department and colleagues is not a common situation in the early stages of our careers. When I was offered the Lectureship I currently hold, I was even more motivated than upon my arrival to the Department. I am ultimately responsible for my scientific success, but it is fantastic to work in a Department that sincerely cares for the development of its younger academics.”

Dr Marina Kuimova first came to Imperial in 2005 as a postdoctoral researcher. In 2007 she secured the 3 year postdoctoral EPSRC Life Science s Interface Fellowship at Imperial, which was followed in 2010 by the EPSRC Career Acceleration Fellowship.

Her work revolves around using small fluorophore molecules to study biophysically important processes in live biological cells.

"The research environment at Imperial is very vibrant and exciting and I really feel part of it. Even as an early career LSI Fellow I was invited to attend key Departmental and Sectional Meetings and this was an excellent way to gather information and get to know other academics.

Professionally, I feel I am treated exactly the same as my male colleagues. Importantly, help, mentoring and support are always available for me as an early career researcher, including from our Head of Department, whose door is always open, be it to discuss the issues of career progression, or the more specific laboratory infrastructure issues. So far I found this extremely helpful for my career."

Dr Philip Miller: "I was awarded an EPSRC-Life Sciences Interface Fellowship (2007-2011) jointly hosted in the Department of Chemistry at Imperial College and Aarhus University PET centre in Denmark. This was my first independent position, and gave me the support and resources to focus solely on my research. I had the opportunity to develop new ideas, form international collaborations and receive training in new areas of science. I was recently appointed as a lecturer within the Department of Chemistry and view my fellowship experience as key to securing a permanent academic position.”

Dr Kim Jelfs joined the Department of Chemistry in October 2013 funded through a Royal Society University Research Fellowship. Her work involves developing computational approaches to direct the synthesis of functional molecular materials, with a current focus on porous molecular materials.

“The research environment at Imperial and in particular the Department of Chemistry is extremely supportive and a great place to be starting my independent research career. Not only has the Department provided a PhD studentship and resources, there is also strong mentoring from the Head of Department, the Postdoctoral Development Centre and my mentor. Interactions with other thriving departments and centres, such as Materials, Physics, Chemical Engineering and the Thomas Young Centre provide exciting opportunities for collaborative research."

Dr James Bull: “I joined Imperial College London in 2009 funded by a 2-year Ramsay Memorial Research Fellowship, which was co-sponsored by the Department of Chemistry. This was my first opportunity to undertake independent research and it enabled me to establish exciting results, attract additional funding and to define a future research direction. I am very grateful for the support and mentoring from my host lab and the department, which were very important and always available.

From this position I have recently been awarded a 5-year EPSRC Career Acceleration Fellowship, which has enabled me to establish a research group. The support of the department was again extremely important in this success, which included the provision of an additional PhD studentship. This EPSRC Fellowship will enable me to continue my research into the development of new chemical methods for the synthesis of diverse molecular frameworks with desirable properties for drug discovery.”