United Kingdom – Greenland Arctic Research Bursaries Scheme 2024-25


An opportunity for United Kingdom-based researchers to apply for bursaries ranging from £5,000 to a maximum of £20,000 to support active participation in new joint partnerships with researchers based in Greenland in the 2024-25 season.

Please note, the call for application has now closed.

Existing bursary holders are eligible to apply for this call. The assessment process will ensure an appropriate balance between new and existing applications, but new applicants are strongly encouraged to apply.


Researchers in the United Kingdom and Greenland are well-placed to develop important new science partnerships that address pressing research questions. These partnerships can support the development of skill- and knowledge-based networks to strengthen both communities; foster the creation of positive, respectful and empowering partnerships; and create lasting research connections.

The United Kingdom’s Department for Science, Innovation and Technology – working with the Greenlandic Research Council, the UK Science and Innovation Network and the NERC Arctic Office – funded a new bursaries scheme which began in 2023. This call is for the second year of the initiative, which will support UK-based researchers working in partnerships with Greenland-based scientists in 2024-25.

The outcomes of the bursaries programme are expected to support and further develop lasting research and collaboration links between UK-based and Greenland-based researchers; to provide opportunities for UK-based researchers to work with new partners in Greenland; and develop ideas for future international projects.

Bursary details

UK-based applicants: This programme is open to UK-based researchers in a broad range of science fields. Applications will be particularly welcomed from early career scientists and all those researchers within groups under-represented across the research community. It is expected that applicants will normally be employed in positions within UK institutions. PhD candidates undertaking the research as part of their qualification will not usually be eligible. Proposals could be for a single researcher or a small number of UK-based researchers working collaboratively. Eligible costs should not exceed £20,000 in total. Applications for smaller sums are especially welcome. All costs will be funded at 100 per cent.

Greenlandic partners: The programme is intended to foster new UK research engagement with researchers based in Greenland. It will be the responsibility of the UK-based applicant to obtain written and specific permission for the UK-based researcher to join with the Greenland-based researcher or team, together with confirmation that any appropriate permits and access provisions are – or will be – in place. This letter or permission must come from the Greenland-based researcher.

New applications and extensions: applications are welcomed by researchers who were successful in the 2023-24 scheme round and by new applicants. Existing bursary holders applying for the 2024-25 round must demonstrate:

  • the additional value being brought to UK and Greenland-based partners over and above the impact of their current work;
  • how the new proposed work is connected to and builds on the existing partnership; and
  • which new Greenland-based partners are included within the application and the additional value this brings.

The assessment of the applications will include a process to ensure an appropriate balance between applications by existing bursary holders and new applicants. New applicants are strongly encouraged to apply.

Supported activities: The expectation is that this will be for practical work, networking and partnership building, including fieldwork and associated research and laboratory work as required, undertaken in the financial year 2024-25 (1 April to 31 March). Applications may be for work which addresses a specific research question or which is part of a wider initiative where the bursary scheme will add value and impact. Applications can also be for work which is focused on capacity and confidence building in new joint teams, sharing skills and techniques, developing practical methods which combine science and traditional and local knowledge and similar initiatives.

The programme will not generally be available to support existing UK-Greenland joint research projects but will focus on new or significantly extended collaborations. Researchers with existing partnerships – whether funded through the 2023-24 bursary scheme or not – must clearly identify the additional value and the new aspects of the collaboration in their application.

Eligible costs can include: Travel, accommodation and subsistence, purchasing/hire/use of special equipment, logistics and shipping costs, specific training and permit/access costs. Where appropriate, travel and related subsistence costs for Greenland-based researchers to visit the UK can be eligible. Salary costs and associated costs, such as insurance, will not normally be eligible. Conference costs are unlikely to be eligible unless there are specific and focused links to the bursary, and fieldwork or other practical project work forms the major part of the proposal. Publication costs will not normally be eligible.

All funds will be dispersed to a UK-based institution. However applicants can identify in their proposal appropriate opportunities to support the activities of Greenland-based research partners should their application be successful. Such transfers will be the responsibility of the UK-based institution.

Research fields: Applications are welcomed from across the full range of Arctic environmental, social and cultural research themes, including: Cryosphere, Atmosphere, Social and Human, Health, Marine, and Terrestrial research. Applications should demonstrate where the proposed methods of work and research questions are connected to and support Greenland’s National Research Strategy 2022-30. Applications which demonstrate clear links to known areas of priority Arctic research, including those identified in the ICARP III process and the IASC Strategic Plan and which show potential for medium-long term collaboration are encouraged.

Eligibility: Applicants who are normally able to apply for UK Research and Innovation funding will be eligible to apply.  

Prioritisation: We strongly encourage applicants to give consideration to public engagement and scientific dissemination within their application, e.g. guest lectures in relevant study programmes, community outreach or similar.

Timelines: All funded bursary activity must be completed during the 2024-25 financial year (1 April 2024 -31 March 2025)

Data handling and storage practices should be in line with overall UK Research and Innovation principles of data management. A short final report will be required, in addition to responses to ad hoc requests.

Greenland research organisations

Details of Greenland-based researchers with whom potential applicants may wish to investigate partnership opportunities can be found through a variety of sources. The Arctic Hub has an excellent overview of potential Greenlandic partner organisations on their website.

Networking and new research partners event

There will be an online event at 1200-1400 UK/GMT, 1000-1200 Nuuk, Greenland on 4 December to enable prospective partners based in the United Kingdom and Greenland to meet and talk to each other, ask questions about the bursaries scheme and exchange information. The event will be held in partnership with the Arctic Hub in Greenland and other organisations.

Participation in this networking event is not mandatory to submit an application to the bursary scheme, but prospective applicants are encouraged to attend.

Please register for the event here: https://forms.office.com/e/eSwFQG8Wtf  with further details to follow.

Application and assessment process

You are strongly encouraged to contact the NERC Arctic Office to discuss your proposal and eligibility at an early stage before submitting an application.

Applications must not exceed four pages A4 (12 point text). They must be submitted electronically to the NERC Arctic Office arctic@bas.ac.uk by 1600 on Friday 19 January 2024 in pdf format.

Supporting documentation such as CVs and confirmation letters from Greenland-based partners can be in addition to the four page limit.

The application must include:

  • A proposal title and executive summary (200 words maximum)
  • A description of the research or other work to be undertaken by the UK applicant, including details of the role and responsibilities of the UK researcher
  • A description of the expected scientific outputs and/or other outcomes/impact of the joint UK-Greenland project
  • Details of the Greenland-based researchers and organisations with which the UK project will link
  • Amount applied for, with a full breakdown of expected costs for the project
  • Evidence of where the proposed work could lead to further medium-long term UK-Greenland Arctic research collaboration; and how the proposed work connects to Greenland National Research Strategy 2022-2030.
  • Self-confirmation of the UK employment status of the intended recipient of the bursary
  • Evidence of the additional value and impact that will be delivered if the applicant is an existing UK-Greenland Arctic Research Bursary 2023-24 holder.

Enclosed documents

  • A confirmation letter from the Greenland-based lead researcher demonstrating their agreement to partner with, and provide support for, the UK component
  • A two-page (max.) CV containing full contact details of the UK-based applicant, including e-mail and telephone details

The review of applications will be undertaken by a small joint UK-Greenland Review Team. The criteria used will include the assessment of all evidence provided, and in particular:

  • The overall importance of the proposed research question in Arctic science, as demonstrated by the applicant and with appropriate reference to the Research Councils’ remits; and/or the value of the new partnership being created, the innovative nature of the links being created; and the potential for new research in the future.
  • The practical feasibility of the proposed work within the budget and timescale outlined.
  • The anticipated scientific outcome and impact, or other impact connected to the proposed work.
  • The level of support and integration with Greenland-based partners; the focus on empowering local research partners and organisations, including knowledge and skills exchange; and planned outreach activity.
  • The extent to which the proposal is a new collaboration in an important topic area and evidence of medium to long term follow-up research opportunities which will deliver closer UK-Greenland research impact
  • Where this is an application from existing UK-Greenland Arctic Bursary Scheme 2023-24 holder, the additional value and impact being delivered by the proposal.


Applications must be submitted by 1600 GMT on Friday 19 January 2024. Confirmation of receipt will be via e-mail. You must contact the NERC Arctic Office – arctic@bas.ac.uk – if you do not receive confirmation of receipt.

Applicants should receive written confirmation of the outcome of their application by the end of February 2024. Funding will be issued to your institution from April 2024 on completion of appropriate documentation.

All Bursary activities must be completed during the 2024-25 financial year.

This call is also available as a pdf document .

Further details and questions

Henry Burgess

NERC Arctic Office


+44 (01223) 221426