Future Leader Fellowships in Plant and Fungal Science

Be one of our annual cohort of early-career researchers as they develop the skills needed to become the future leaders in plant and fungal science

Researchers in white coats in the seed labs with bags of agar plates

The Future Leader Fellowship in Plant and Fungal Science provides a unique opportunity for early-career researchers to develop their scientific portfolio and skills in a vibrant research environment, working with colleagues in Kew Science to make substantial contributions to challenges facing humanity.

Fellowships will be awarded by Kew on an annual basis to talented early-career researchers with innovative and viable research ideas.

Through the Fellowship, researchers will gain an internationally outstanding level of educational and professional development and will be empowered to establish themselves as independent researchers in their discipline.


Apply now

Fellowships at a glance:

  • Five Future Leader Fellowships awarded annually 
  • Four years in duration, with the opportunity for contract extensions
  • Set budget for research expenses 
  • Access to a mobility fund to allow for secondments and placements
  • Leadership training programme and opportunity for mentorship 

Each RBG Kew Future Leader Fellow will be line-managed by a senior researcher and will become fully integrated into one of our research teams and Kew Science as a whole. 

The Fellows will be part of a stimulating research environment with access to state-of-the-art facilities, world-class collections, unique public engagement opportunities and several hundred plant and fungal experts to collaborate with. 

The Fellowship will include a budget for research expenses and access to a mobility fund to carry out a research visit of up to three months at a UK or overseas academic or non-academic organisation. 

Fellows will be encouraged to use their time at RBG Kew as an opportunity to build their track record through publishing high-quality academic papers and securing research funding.

They will also be given support to develop their research networks, both at RBG Kew and externally, supervise MSc and PhD students, contribute to science communication and public engagement activities, and commit time to a variety of career development opportunities. 

Central to the Fellowship is a comprehensive development and mentorship scheme that all Fellows complete during their time at RBG Kew.

This scheme will provide Fellows with the opportunities needed to gain the necessary skills and training to establish themselves as independent researchers.

It includes a range of training workshops on topics from grant writing to research impact, a mentorship programme, bi-annual meetings with the Director of Science, and opportunities for researcher-led development. This could include activities such as symposia, discussion groups or writing retreats. 

The Future Leader Fellowship in Plant and Fungal Science is equivalent to a postdoctoral research role, and the Fellowship aims to provide early-career researchers with the time and resources to build their track record so they can move on to an independent research role following completion of the Fellowship.

How to apply

Five research Fellowships, aligned to Kew’s Scientific Priorities, as outlined in the Kew Science Strategy, are available each year spread across Kew's two sites: Kew Gardens and Wakehurst.

Applications are currently open. View all Future Leader Fellowship opportunities on Kew’s careers portal and apply by 21 April 2024.

If you have any questions on any aspect of the programme, please email FLFScience@kew.org.

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