Summary 

The vision of the Wellcome Trust, the UK-based global charity, is to achieve extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. This is accomplished through a broad range of funding schemes in support of outstanding researchers and innovative research programmes in biomedical and clinical research and the medical humanities in the UK and overseas, including the Republic of Ireland. Since 2005, the Wellcome Trust has awarded 249 grants to Republic of Ireland institutions, with a total value of £44m.

From 1 October 2010 the Wellcome Trust, in partnership with SFI and the HRB, will fund biomedical and clinical research in the Republic of Ireland under the auspices of the SFI-HRB-Wellcome Trust Biomedical Research Partnership.

In line with their strategic research agendas, SFI and the HRB will co-fund with the Wellcome Trust successful biomedical and clinical science applications under the following Trust funding schemes:

  • Investigator Awards
  • Fellowships
  • Seed Awards
  • Collaborative Awards

The Wellcome Trust is responsible for the administration of grant applications and awards made under this Partnership.

Detailed information for each scheme is provided on the Trust’s website.

Applications should be made directly to the Wellcome Trust. All applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the Trust for advice in advance of submission. The Trust is responsible for the application assessment process and the final funding decision, liaising with SFI and the HRB at each stage.

Principal Research Fellowships Because of their size and strategic importance to SFI and the HRB, prospective applicants for Principal Research Fellows (PRFs) must liaise with SFI and the HRB and provide an expression of interest to SFI and the HRB (as per instructions from SFI and the HRB). Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact SFI and/or the HRB to discuss potential applications in advance of submitting an expression of interest to the PRFs In addition, applicants are advised to consult with the Trust at an early stage of the process for informal advice. 

Grant applications made to the Trust for this scheme must be accompanied by a letter of endorsement from SFI and the HRB. The decision to provide a letter of endorsement rests with SFI and the HRB and will be final.

Collaborative Awards provide flexible support to excellent groups of independent researchers with outstanding track records. Proposals must address important scientific problems that can only be achieved through a collaborative team effort. Although, the Trust encourage applications which propose to carry out interdisciplinary research across their Science, Humanities and Social Sciences, and Innovations funding, the SFI-HRB partnership only supports applications for Collaborative Awards under the Science division. Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the Wellcome Trust at an early stage of the process for informal advice. In addition, for financial forecasting purposes, collaborative award applicants must contact the HRB and/or SFI after the Wellcome Trust’s preliminary application deadline date for a given round by submitting their preliminary application form (latest version from the Wellcome Trust). The preliminary application should be submitted via email to contact@wellcome-ireland.com and the host institution copied on the email.

The Wellcome Trust will manage successful applications for the duration of the award. Successful applicants must adhere to the terms and conditions associated with awards from the Wellcome Trust.

Research funded under the SFI-HRB-Wellcome Trust Biomedical Research Partnership must not comprise any component of the following:

  • research intended to create human embryos solely for the purpose of research or for the purpose of stem cell procurement, including by means of somatic cell nuclear transfer
  • research using human embryonic stem cells or tissues

The Trust may be willing to fund such research outside the partnership agreement. If you wish to apply for funding for this purpose, please contact the Trust for advice.

The Wellcome Trust may also be willing to consider applications from the Republic of Ireland for other grant schemes. The partnership agreement will not apply in these circumstances and funding would be provided in full by the Trust. If you wish to apply for a funding scheme not covered by the partnership agreement, please contact the Trust for advice. Funding schemes not covered by the partnership agreement but open to applications from the Republic of Ireland include but are not limited to

Funding in the areas of technology transfer and medical humanities will not be considered under the SFI-HRB-Wellcome Trust Biomedical Research Partnership. The Wellcome Trust may be willing to consider such applications outside the partnership agreement. A number of funding opportunities in the areas of public engagement and society and ethics are available to applicants from the Republic of Ireland. Please refer to eligibility information for the relevant grant scheme on the Trust’s website, or contact the Trust for advice.

Further information

Queries about Ireland's participation in this scheme & requests for endorsement (necessary for Principal Research Fellowships only) should be directed to contact@wellcome-ireland.com

Contact Wellcome