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POST's Parliamentary Academic Fellowship Scheme - Directed Call

The Parliamentary Academic Fellowships Scheme: Directed Call is now a rolling scheme

Following the success of POST's Parliamentary Academic Fellowship Scheme pilot, POST's Knowledge Exchange Unit (KEU) has reopened the scheme. As before, the scheme has two streams: a directed call and an open call.

In December 2019, the directed call reopened with 14 projects proposed by UK Parliament. The application window for those projects has now closed. However, this has now become a rolling scheme, and UK Parliament will now issue projects at any point, according to its needs.    

Through the rolling scheme, offices across Parliament will issue projects, which they would like an academic fellow to conduct. These projects will include contributing to core work of the office, filling gaps in expertise, building staff capacity and skills, informing parliamentary scrutiny, analysing and evaluating parliamentary practices, or helping to grow Parliament's academic networks. Fellowship projects for which we are currently seeking fellows are listed here, with details on how to apply listed below.

Current fellowship opportuntiies

There are currently no directed call fellowship opportunities available.


How to apply

Applicants must: 

Identify the project they would like to apply for. Please see above for links to proposed projects. 

Read the Guidance Note for Applicants.

Complete an Application Form (which will be available alongside a fellowship opportunity) and send a copy of the completed form, along with a two-page CV and a sample of writing for a non-academic audience of between 500–1500 words - all in MSWord format - to We would also appreciate if you would complete and send us the Diversity Monitoring Questionnaire, although this is voluntary. You should mark the subject of the email as: “PAFS: [number and title of project]”.  

Once the application window has closed, parliamentary offices will shortlist applicants and then conduct interviews via telephone, Skype, or in UK Parliament. Following interviews, an offer will be made if an appropriate candidate is identified.  

More information about the scheme can be found below. 

Further information

Who can participate in the scheme? 

Fellowships are open to all UK-based university researchers who have a PhD or are employed in a university on an academic contract, or university staff working in impact or knowledge exchange, and who are eligible for a parliamentary pass. Successful fellows will undergo security clearance to CTC levelMore information on security vetting in Parliament can be found here. (The host parliamentary office will provide security clearance forms and guidance once an offer has been made).  

Why participate in the scheme? 

Fellowships have a positive impact on both Parliament and the fellow. They are a key way that research and researchers can impact Parliament. The last cohort of fellows filled gaps in expertise, built staff capacity and skills, informed parliamentary scrutiny, gave Parliament new perspectives on its practices, grew its academic networks and improved its knowledge exchange, and enabled Parliamentarians and staff to conduct new activities (see our report here). Outcomes for fellows included: research impact, increased knowledge of Parliament, developed networks, impact on career, impact on own research agenda, publications and impacts on teaching. Details on the impacts of previous fellowship projects can also be found in the KEU's report on the pilot scheme, as can a number of case studies and perspectives from parliamentary hosts. 

Where and when will fellowships take place?

Projects may begin any time after an offer has been made by the parliamentary host and security clearance gained. Each project proposal details ideal start and end dates, however, in some instances, there may be some flexibility; this will need to be discussed with the parliamentary host at interview.  

Projects vary in proposed duration and may last up to a 1 year. If there is the desire from the parliamentary office and fellow, projects may be extended up to 2 years once the project has commenced. 

Fellows will likely spend part of their time in Westminster; however, for many of the proposed projects, it is not a requisite that they be based in Westminster. More details of proposed working arrangements are found in each project proposal. Working patterns may be discussed at interview. 

How is the scheme funded? 

Fellowships (time, teaching cover, travel, subsistence, accommodation and any other associated expenses) will be funded by funding streams from research institutions or research funders. Funding should be sought by the applicant and confirmed prior to submission of the application. The funding source must be stated in the application, along with confirmation of approval from the budget holder. It is expected that funding will mainly come from impact funding sources such as Research Council Impact Acceleration Awards or specific university impact budgets. Applicants may also seek funding from other research organisations or funders, for example research networks, charitable funding, learned society funding, or professional association funding. Fellowships may not be funded with private funding or funding from industry.  

How is the scheme administered? 

POST's KEU is coordinating publicity and receipt of applications. The parliamentary offices who have proposed the projects are responsible for shortlisting and interviewing candidates and offering fellowships. They will also have primary responsibility for fellows throughout the duration of the fellowship. 

Please direct all queries to Dr Laura Webb, Knowledge Exchange Manager, KEU, POST: