Flexible research careers
We understand that different people choose different career paths, so we want to provide flexible research career opportunities.
We constantly review the funding and career support we offer our researchers.
Re-entering a research career
Our Research Career Re-entry Fellowships offer postdoctoral research scientists the opportunity to re-establish their scientific career after a continuous break from research of at least two years.
The Wellcome Sanger Institute’s Janet Thornton Fellowships help scientists to return to research after a career break of a year or more.
If you need to take sick leave, we'll supplement your grant to cover your salary and contribute towards your research costs.
Maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental leave
We cover the costs of maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental leave for our researchers.
Support for researchers with caring responsibilities
If you have to attend a conference or research meeting, you can claim costs to cover caring responsibilities.
Flexible and part-time working
If you’re funded by us, you can request flexible and part-time working. We always try to accommodate requests, as long as they fit in with the needs of employing organisations.
For more information, please contact our Grants Information Desk.
Our policies and activities supporting flexible research careers
- We expect Wellcome-funded researchers to adopt the principles of the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers.
- We’ve recently refreshed our clinical research fellowships. This is to enable clinical research fellows to work more flexibly and balance clinical training with time to do research.
- We’re following the progress of our researchers’ careers through our career tracker.
- As part of our policy work, we’re often involved in high-level conversations about issues facing the research workforce, and how to support diversity.
- For tips and advice from some of our fellows who have taken career breaks, read: Getting back into research after a career break [PDF 1MB].
- Vitae is a UK organisation championing the personal, professional and career development of doctoral researchers and research staff in higher education organisations and research institutes.
- Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowships, administered by the Royal Society, are for outstanding UK scientists at an early stage of their research career who need a flexible working pattern because of personal circumstances such as parenting or health issues.
- The Athena SWAN Charter recognises and celebrates good employment practice for women working in science, engineering and technology.
- AcademiaNet is a database of women researchers across all disciplines in Europe and beyond which aims to make it easier for scientific bodies to find women members for committees and commissions.
- Stay Connected Bursaries, administered by the Biochemical Society, help people keep up-to-date with the latest scientific developments while on a career break.
- Women Returners supports women returning to work after an extended career break.