Funded Support Programmes

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One of the main goals of the Institute is to establish a level playing field for all, developing leaders in a diverse and inclusive environment. In order to achieve this, we have established a series of diverse and inclusive initiatives and 'funding pots' to support colleagues and students to overcome barriers and raise awareness across a range of EDI-focussed activities


Academic returners' research fund

The Academic Returners’ Research Fund (AR2F) provides support for female and male academics embarking upon, or returning to work after, a period of maternity or parental leave, or extended health-related leave.

Established in 2014, the AR2F was initially designed to provide support for female academics working in STEMM subject areas. 
The scheme was expanded in 2022 to include maternity and parental leavers whose research is impacted by the extended leave, 
and expanded again in 2023 to include those returning from extended health-related leave.

The purpose of the AR2F is to provide the opportunity for researchers to plan how their research commitments and aspirations can be supported during and/or after maternity or parental leave.

The fund enables academics, impacted by extended leave, to continue their research endeavours and will:

  • sustain research productivity
  • facilitate increased income through the creation of research outputs, successful bidding to grants and an enhanced submission to the REF
  • boost research and international reputation
  • enhance retention and morale of academic researchers impacted by extended periods of absence

The AR2F scheme was recognised by HEFCE (2017) as 'Sector Leading' and 'Innovative Practice in Advancing Equality and Diversity'


Worldw-ide fund

The Worldw-IDE Fund was established in 2018 to support University staff, across a range of international activities, to alleviate disadvantage or under-representation in terms of Inclusion, Diversity and Equality.


Back2Science research programme

The Back2Science Research Programme provides the opportunity for both women and men in STEMM subject areas, who have taken extended career breaks of more than 5 years, to join an established research group, build confidence and gain contemporary research experience. The aim is to provide a sound platform for Fellows to kick-start their careers, providing opportunities for researchers to develop independent research projects, funding applications and research publications, or undertake further study.


M&N fund

The M&N Student Fund aims to empower and engage our students in activities that support and advance equality, diversity and inclusion.


The Diversity & Inclusion Campaigns and Events Fund (DICE)

The Diversity & Inclusion Campaigns and Events Fund (DICE) is available to all staff across the University in support of EDI related campaigns and events. Staff can apply for funding of up £1000 to host EDI related campaigns and events. In exceptional circumstances the EGI may match additional funding provided by other resources. *Funds are limited and will be allocated on a first come first served basis to applications which meet the requirements.