Applications for this scheme are now closed.

Please note this was the last call under the Investment in Research Talent funding cycle. Future Chair in Emerging Technologies calls are yet to be confirmed. 

The Academy’s Chair in Emerging Technologies scheme aims to identify global research visionaries and provide them with long term support to lead on developing emerging technology areas with high potential to deliver economic and social benefit to the UK.

The Academy will aim to appoint eight new Chairs in Emerging Technologies in the 2020/21 round of applications. By covering employment and research costs, the award enables sustained focus on advancing the technology to application in a strategic manner over a period of up to 10 years.

The Academy is not prescriptive in defining the focus of Chairs, except that they require a powerful case to be made for the value of an extended long-term vision through to application, and hence for funding that provides sustained support for a world-leading researcher, ensuring continuity of their focus across other grants and contracts and removing any expectation of duties that do not support the technology programme.

It is often the nature of an emerging technology that its potential is not widely appreciated until championed by a visionary individual who can set out clearly the opportunities it offers. Thus, this call is deliberately broad and open, and we encourage applications that make a case for disruptive innovation in well-established areas or overlooked fields as well as new emerging technologies.

Applications are welcome from across a broad range of engineering and technology areas including research topics currently considered basic science, but which now require engineering ways of thinking to drive them towards application and in more-established technology areas where the applicant has identified a high-impact novel approach. 

However, evidence of proof of concept should already be established. Beyond this, we are not prescriptive about the Technology Readiness Level or similar assessment of innovation readiness expected of applications. However, we do require a clear ten-year research vision underpinning the proposal that will make a significant difference to how the emerging technology is taken forward and the consequential economic and social benefit to the UK.

  • The Academy is committed to diversity, and encourages applications from women and other groups who are currently underrepresented across engineering
  • The Academy welcomes applications from high-calibre researchers currently based outside the UK, in line with the Government’s Rutherford Fund to attract global talent to the UK. 

Please see announcements of the 2018, 2019 and 2020 cohorts.

Press release: Academy funds global research visionaries to advance emerging technologies

For any queries, please email the Programme Manager, Keir Bonnar.