The SFC Saltire Emerging Researcher Scheme


SFC logo, Scot Govt logo & SGSAH logo

The SFC Saltire Emerging Researcher Scheme for the Arts & Humanities is a programme run by SGSAH with funding from the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) to enable research collaborations between Scotland and Europe through a series of research exchanges, with researchers travelling from Europe to Scotland, and from Scotland to Europe. The overall aim of the scheme is to promote mobility between Scotland and European research partners in order to strengthen existing, and seed future, research relationships. 

It is anticipated that the SFC funding will support 10 researchers in total, with additional cohort members deriving from SGSAH’s AHRC- and SFC-funded PhD researchers.

The scheme is structured around SGSAH’s Strategic Themes and Priority Areas, full details of which are available in the scheme Guidelines:

  • Modern Languages
  • Celtic Languages and Studies
  • Creative Industries/Economies
  • Cultural and Heritage Studies
  • Environmental Humanities
  • Equalities, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice in an Arts & Humanities context

The exchanges will take place between January and August 2022. Exchange proposals may include in-person, hybrid and online aspects, and can last from one to six months. The scheme also includes an in-person, hybrid and online cohort development programme to nurture PhD and ECR perspectives, skills and qualities. Exchange researchers will additionally have the opportunity to showcase their work through SGSAH’s new online research showcase, and participate in the 2022 SGSAH International Summer School.

Download the Guidelines: 
SFC Saltire Emerging Researcher Scheme Guidelines (Version 5 | PDF document - 596 KB)

Find below the recordings of the two information sessions which we hosted online on 14 & 28 October 2021:



The exchanges are for PhD and early career researchers (ECRs) in the Arts & Humanities to benefit from a concerted period of time spent in another country, working with a mentor and accessing the networks and resources of a host institution. Scottish PhDs and ECRs must be registered at or have graduated from a SGSAH member HEI and be planning an exchange at an EU, EEA or EFTA HEI. PhDs and ECRs registered at or graduated from an EU, EEA or EFTA HEI must be planning an exchange at a SGSAH member HEI. 

ECRs must be within 1 year of notification of award of their PhD (under exceptional circumstances this can be extended to 2 years – see the scheme Guidelines for full detail).

The SGSAH HEIs are:

Abertay University
Edinburgh Napier University
The Glasgow School of Art
Heriot-Watt University
Queen Margaret University
Robert Gordon University
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
University of Aberdeen
University of Dundee
University of Edinburgh
University of Glasgow
University of St Andrews
University of Stirling
University of Strathclyde
University of the Highlands & Islands
University of the West of Scotland

Application Process

Read the Guidelines for the scheme (available to download above) thoroughly before applying. You should then contact your chosen institution as soon as possible to discuss their process for supporting your application.

The application is made through SGSAH’s online system. The Guidelines include a template for the information you will be required to complete online, as well as the assessment criteria for the scheme.

There are two stages to the online application system.

Expression of interest (deadline 5pm BST [ie GMT+1] on Friday 29 October). This stage involves:

  • Inputting information into the online system, including your planned host institution
  • A brief Expression of Interest of the proposed exchange project (200 words)
  • Details of exceptional circumstances if you are an ECR and you are asking for an extension to the eligibility of within 1 year of notification of award to within 2 years
  • Equalities monitoring data

Full application (deadline 12pm GMT on Monday 15 November 2021). This stage involves:

  • A full research proposal; details of how you will benefit from cohort-building, training and development activities; fit to the SGSAH Strategic Themes and Priority Areas
  • A budget and justification of resources
  • A CV (up to 4pp)
  • A letter of support from your PhD supervisor (up to 2pp)
  • A letter of support from the proposed Host Institution (Head of Department or equivalent) (up to 2pp)

Late applications will only be considered where there is evidenced breakdown in SGSAH's operational systems and where such system failures have made submission by the deadline impossible. Please note that SGSAH will not accept late applications where there has been a systems failure at the applicant's end (e.g failure of internet connection). For this reason, we strongly advise applicants to complete the application process at least 48 hours in advance of the deadline.

Applicants will be informed of the outcome by Monday 13 December.

Key dates

Please note that the application deadlines have been extended – see the revised dates in the table below.

Programme launch and call for applications  w/c Monday 4 October 2021 

Pre-application information session 1

Introduction to the SGSAH SFC Saltire Emerging Researchers Scheme: Webinar 

Thursday 14 October 2021
12 - 1pm BST (ie GMT+1)
Expression of interest deadline  5pm BST, Friday 29 October 2021 

Pre-application information session 2

SGSAH SFC Saltire Emerging Researchers Scheme - Completing your application Q&A Session

Thursday 28 October 2021
11am - 12pm BST

Full application deadline  12pm GMT, Monday 15 November 2021 
Notification of application outcomes  Monday 13 December 2021 
Acceptance of award deadline  Friday 17 December 2021 
Exchanges  Between January-August 2022