PhD and Early Career Researchers

Opportunities for PhD and ECR's to develop their skills across a range of activities, projects, events and conferences

Early-career ecologist grant writing workshop

Expressions of interest are now being accepted to attend a two day workshop on grant-writing for early-career ecologists. The workshop is for those planning to submit an independent fellowship or grant proposal as named postdoc in the near future.

The workshop will include best practice and tailored support focused on converting a project idea into a grant or fellowship application. Participants will hear from ecologists in early and later career stages who are recipients of fellowships, representing multiple research organisations and funding sources.

By the end of the workshop, delegates will have gained detailed insight into the grant writing process. After the workshop, it is expected that each participant will leave feeling confident they have the knowledge and ability to submit an application.


Thursday 26th October (10:30 – 19:00)

Friday 27th October (9:30 – 16:00)

(networking session Thursday evening)


Charles Darwin House, central London


  • Plenaries from experienced grant recipients
  • Activities to better understand the grant assessment/feedback process
  • Opportunities to write your grant application with facilitation and feedback from mentors & peers
  • Networking
  • Small discussion groups
  • Lunch and refreshments provided


£110 BES members

£130 non BES members

Not a member? Join us here:

How to apply:

Please fill in this short expression of interest form. Please note these forms are not assessed in anyway but will be used to ensure delegates come ready with a layman summary to work on during the workshop. Whilst this workshop is aimed at early postdoctoral ecologists, final year PhD students are welcome to apply. Please note that places are limited and fill quickly so early applications are encouraged.

Please see below for two questions featured on the form. We would advise you to write your answers in MS Word and copy/paste them into the form.

What do you hope to get out of this workshop?

Please provide a “lay summary” of your research proposal (up to 300 words). We will not judge your expression of interest based on the content of this, but want to be sure you come with a specific proposal idea to work on at the workshop. This information will not be shared outside of the workshop organisers and speakers, but will be used by us to be prepared to give participants the best possible tailored experience.

Expression of interest forms will be reviewed on a weekly basis. Delegates will be emailed every following Monday ** with information about how to book a ticket for the event. Please note receiving an email does not guarantee you a place on the workshop. Spaces are limited so there will be a waiting list – these will be allocated on a first come first served basis, depending on availability.

** The first email will be sent the week beginning 4th September due to annual leave.

Training and Travel Grants:

The BES Training and Travel Grants have already been allocated for 2017. We would advise you to contact your institution/department for financial support to cover any training and travel costs.

Ecological Ambassadors Scheme

The Ecological Ambassadors Scheme aims to help PhD students and their departments build relationships with their local schools, develop outreach activities that link to curricula and hopefully encourage young people to consider further study in ecological science.

How to apply

The application deadline for the 2017/18 cohort has now passed. The BES do however offer a range of other public engagement activities to get involved with.

PhD Mentors for the BES Summer School

The BES Summer School offers PhD students the opportunity to act as mentors. Summer School 2017 took place on 17th – 21st July at the Dale Fort Field Studies Centre and opportunities to apply to be a PhD mentor for 2018 will become available shortly.

You, along with others will take on the social programme, develop some teaching ideas of your own, assist workshop leaders with delivery in areas of your interest along with providing small group activities for your mentees.

The school is open to 50 Undergraduates and 10 A-level students from across the UK.

We ask all PhD mentors to commit to outdoor first aid training, fully paid for by the BES in preparation for the school. A fully enhanced DBS check and a weekend planning trip will coincide with the outdoor first aid training.

You can read more about the school itself, previous mentor perspectives and programmes here

For more information regarding either of these opportunities please contact Amy Padfield for details.