Postdoctoral Fellowships

LSE ESRC DTP invites applications for four ESRC funded Postdoctoral Fellowships to commence October 2024

ESRC Fellowships are aimed at providing a career development opportunity for those in the immediate postdoctoral stage of their career, to provide the opportunity to consolidate their PhD through developing publications, their networks, and their research and professional skills. The Fellowships last one year (or part-time equivalent). 

Full information is available in the Call Specification. The ESRC has also produced a Frequently Asked Questions Document.

Find out more about the ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme and the application process at LSE below.

1. Eligibility

2. Timeline

3. LSE DTP Application process

4. Mandatory Attachments

5. Further information 


1. Eligibility 

This opportunity is open to applicants who have completed their PhD at a UK research organisation (RO) and applicants must be aligned to an ESRC accredited subject area. The LSE ESRC DTP has accredited subject areas across 19 departments, which are listed HERE

Applicants are not required to have previously held an ESRC-funded studentship in order to be eligible to apply. 

Fellowships can contain some new research activity (up to 25%) but their primary purpose is the consolidation of your research profile soon after successful completion of your PhD. 

Applicants must:

  • have been awarded a PhD or have passed their viva voce with minor amendments by the application deadline of 16 May 2024 and have been awarded their PhD by the fellowship start date of 1 October 2024, and;

  • have no more than 12 months of active postdoctoral experience. This is measured from the applicant’s viva voce pass date to the application deadline of 16 May 2024.

The call is not open to applicants who are established, permanent members of staff in an academic position with a research component. 

Please see the ESRC Call Specification and Frequently Asked Questions documents for further information on eligibility.




February 2024 

Competition launch 

12 April, 2024

Recommended deadline for applicants to contact prospective mentors

16 May, 2024, 16.00

 Application deadline


Only applications containing all mandatory attachments (listed below) will be considered. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

 July 2024

Decisions confirmed to applicants


Applicants may be placed on the reserve list at this stage.

July – August

Successful applicants submit their proposals to ESRC

 1 October 2024

Fellowships commence


LSE DTP Application process

We expect a high level of competition for these fellowships. The selection process involves several stages.

Stage One

As described in the call, you will first need to identify and contact a suitable mentor before submitting your application. Candidates can contact the relevant department or reach out directly via the LSE staff search page

You should contact the relevant Mentor as soon as possible, and no later than 12 April, 2024. This recommended deadline is set to allow prospective mentors to provide you with a copy of their statement in support of your application, and their CV. Candidates are advised to share their application form with the prospective mentor during this initial stage.

You should complete your application and submit it, including all mandatory attachments, to LSE ESRC DTP via the LSE e-recruitment system. The ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship will be advertised on this site. It will accept submissions from 16 April 2024, and will close at 16.00 (UK time) on 16 May, 2024.

Stage Two

After the submission deadline has passed, applications which do not include all mandatory attachments will receive an ‘unsuccessful’ notification from the LSE e-recruitment system. Applications which include all mandatory attachments will be reviewed and ranked by departmental panels based on the ESRC assessment criteria provided in the Call Specification. The highest ranked applications for whom suitably experienced mentors are available will be nominated to the DTP. At this point, the Head of Department will submit their supporting statement for each shortlisted candidate to the DTP. To confirm – the Head of Department Statement is an internal process at the LSE ESRC DTP, these do not need to be included with applicants’ initial application via the e-recruitment system.

If an application is not nominated to the DTP, the candidate will receive an ‘unsuccessful’ notification from the LSE e-recruitment system.

Stage Three

LSE DTP Postdoctoral Fellowship Awards Panel will consider applications nominated by departments. The panel will rank the nominated applications, and the top four candidates will receive offers from the DTP. Remaining applications will be placed on a reserve list until four fellowship posts have been accepted by successful applicants.

Stage Four

As each ESRC DTP makes funding decisions on behalf of the ESRC, successful applicants who accept their postdoctoral fellowship offer are then required to submit their proposal to ESRC. 


4. Mandatory Attachments

Applications that do not contain all applicable mandatory attachments will not be considered. All mandatory attachments are listed below.


1.    LSE ESRC PDF Application Form 2024

2.    Case for support (maximum six sides of A4).

3.    LSE ESRC PDF Justification of Resources Form 2024 - Use this template

4.    Applicant CV (maximum two sides of A4).

5.    Mentor statement and summary CV (maximum two sides of A4).

6.    Referee statement (maximum two sides of A4).

7.    Workplan (maximum two sides of A4).

Additional attachments:

8.    Data Management Plan – mandatory where new datasets (of any size) will be generated as part of the fellowship (maximum three sides of A4). It is a requirement of the ESRC Research Data Policy that all applicants planning to generate any new dataset as part of their grant must include a Data Management Plan.

9.    List of Publications (bibliography)– mandatory if any references are cited in the proposal (applicant’s own publications should be included in their CV).

Other attachments

10.    Overseas Institutional Letter of Support – mandatory if you are intending to visit an overseas institution as part of the fellowship (maximum one side of A4 on headed paper).

11.    Project Partner Letter of Support – mandatory if you are intending to work with a project partner (maximum one side of A4 per partner on headed paper).


5. Further Information

The ESRC website includes resources on preparing research proposals, and information about ethics, research impact and development collaborations.


The ESRCs impact toolkit is a helpful reference for developing impact strategies.



ESRC Research Ethics Guidance provides useful information on ethics issues to consider during the lifecycle of a project.

ESRC Research Data Policy defines the roles and responsibilities of ESRC grant holders for research data.


Contact mechanism

Queries about the scheme that are not covered in the above guidance and documents should be sent to with the subject ‘ESRC PDF Application Scheme Query 2024-25'. We receive a very high level of interest in this scheme and you may not receive an immediate response.