Collaborative Awards in Science

Collaborative Awards promote the development of new ideas and speed the pace of discovery. We fund teams of researchers, consisting of independent research groups, to work together on the most important scientific problems that can only be solved through collaborative efforts.

Scheme at a glance

Career stage:

Leading a research programme

Where your host organisation is based:

UK, Republic of Ireland, Low- or middle-income countries

Type of researcher:

Basic, Clinical, Public health

Level of funding:

Up to £4 million

Duration of funding:

Up to 5 years

Who can apply

Collaborative Awards are for teams of researchers bringing together the relevant expertise and experience to address the most important scientific problems.  

Each applicant must be essential to the proposed collaborative research and have:

  • Proven research expertise and experience in their field.
  • An academic or research post (or equivalent).
  • A salary for the duration of the award period. If this is not in place, your employing organisation must provide a guarantee of salary support for the duration of the award.

Members of the team must have proven experience in collaborative research and consist of independent research groups.

Team size will depend on the proposed research, but should generally have more than two applicants, and no more than seven.

Teams may be based in the same or in different organisations, and must bring different expertise or disciplines to the research question.

Applicants should usually be based at eligible organisations in the UK, Republic of Ireland, or low- or middle-income countries. However, we can make exceptions for projects that need specific expertise or resources provided by team members based in other countries.

Read about our Collaborative Awards grantholders and their research.

What we're looking for

Your proposal should describe a significant piece of work that addresses the most important questions, in an area relevant to the mission of the Wellcome Trust. 

You should be able to demonstrate why the scientific problem you are tackling can only be solved through an integrated, collaborative team effort.

We encourage interdisciplinary research collaborations, although they are not essential. We also encourage applications that propose interdisciplinary research across our Science, Humanities and Social Science and Innovations teams.

We will review:

  • the track records of all team members, relative to their career stage
  • the importance of your research question(s) to your field(s)
  • the feasibility of your proposal
  • the suitability of the environments in which you and your team members do the research
  • the time you and your team members will spend on the Collaborative Award, and how it fits in with other academic commitments.

Other schemes

Collaborative Awards in Humanities and Social Science

Funding teams who are tackling major health-related questions in the humanities and social sciences that require a collaborative approach.
Full details of Collaborative Awards in Humanities and Social Science

Investigator Awards in Science

Enabling independent researchers with a compelling research vision to tackle the most important questions in science.
Full details of Investigator Awards in Science
Scheme finder

A Collaborative Award can be up to £4 million and last for up to five years, but requests must be appropriate to the proposed research. Our support includes:

You can also apply for Research Enrichment funding to increase the impact of your work through activities in public engagement, open research, and diversity and inclusion.

What we don’t offer

We don't fund overheads unless they're included on this page (eg research management and support costs).

You must submit your application through the Wellcome Trust Grant Tracker (WTGT).

Start your application

Stages of application

You should discuss the scope of your proposal and suitability for the scheme with us before you submit your full application. Please contact the relevant member of our Science division.

  1. Submit your preliminary application

    You must submit your application through the Wellcome Trust Grant Tracker.

    View the Sample preliminary application form for Collaborative Awards in Science [PDF 138KB]

  2. Shortlisting

    If eligible, our senior science staff may assess your proposal’s initial suitability and competitiveness for the scheme. 

  3. Submit your full application

    If your preliminary application is successful, we'll invite you to submit a full application. 

    View the  Sample full application form for Collaborative Awards in Science [PDF 293KB]

  4. Scientific review

    One of the following expert review groups will review your application, depending on your area of research:

    If shortlisted, we will invite you for an interview. We'll give you at least two weeks' notice. 

  5. External written peer review

    We’ll seek written comments from external expert reviewers. Unattributed comments will be sent to you before your interview.

    If peer reviews indicate that your application is not competitive, it will be withdrawn at this stage.

  6. Interview

    You will be interviewed by our Science Interview Panel at the Wellcome offices in London.

Disabled applicants

If you are disabled or have a chronic health condition, we can support you with the application process.

Dates

We consider applications three times a year. You must submit your application by 17:00 (GMT/BST) on the deadline day. We don’t accept late applications.

April 2018 round

  • Preliminary application deadline

    24 April 2018, 17:00 BST

  • Full application deadline

    24 July 2018, 17:00 BST

  • Shortlisting

    September 2018

  • Interviews

    27–29 November 2018

August 2018 round

  • Preliminary application deadline

    20 August 2018, 17:00 BST

  • Full application deadline

    12 November 2018, 17:00 GMT

  • Shortlisting

    January 2019

  • Interviews

    2–4 April 2019

November 2018 round

  • Preliminary application deadline

    19 November 2018, 17:00 GMT

  • Full application deadline

    28 February 2019, 17:00 GMT

  • Shortlisting

    April 2019

  • Interviews

    16–18 July 2019

More information

Find out about how we've worked with the funding community to develop principles and obligations setting out what we expect from those responsible for clinical training, trainees and funders across the UK.

Definitions

Leading a research programme

For researchers with a PhD or the equivalent, and significant postdoctoral research experience.

UK
Republic of Ireland
Low- or middle-income countries

See a list of low- and middle-income countries, as defined by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Basic

You're not a clinically qualified researcher.

Clinical

You're a clinically qualified doctor, vet, dentist or a clinical psychologist.

Public health

Develop your research career

See our other schemes for researchers who are interested in leading a research programme.

Key dates

We consider applications three times a year.

April 2018 round

  • Preliminary application deadline

    24 April 2018, 17:00 BST

  • Full application deadline

    24 July 2018, 17:00 BST

  • Shortlisting

    September 2018

  • Interviews

    27–29 November 2018

August 2018 round

  • Preliminary application deadline

    20 August 2018, 17:00 BST

  • Full application deadline

    12 November 2018, 17:00 GMT

  • Shortlisting

    January 2019

  • Interviews

    2–4 April 2019

November 2018 round

  • Preliminary application deadline

    19 November 2018, 17:00 GMT

  • Full application deadline

    28 February 2019, 17:00 GMT

  • Shortlisting

    April 2019

  • Interviews

    16–18 July 2019

Contact us

Contact our information officers if you have a question about funding.

If you have a question about the scope and content of your proposal, contact the relevant person in our Science team.

People we've funded