Distinguished Visiting Fellowship Programme

DVFs-imageThe Institute of Advanced Studies welcomes nominations for the IAS Distinguished Visiting Fellowship (DVF) programme which brings to Birmingham outstanding academics from global leading institutions around the world for research collaborations and the enrichment of campus life.


  • To attract outstanding academics from global leading institutions, who are operating at the cutting edge of their disciplines to work collaboratively with colleagues at the University of Birmingham.
  • To focus on new and existing areas which are timely and relevant to national and international priorities and cross disciplinary boundaries.


We would normally expect fellows to spend a minimum of one month on campus although cases for longer and shorter visits will be considered.


The IAS will:

  • arrange and fund the Fellow's travel to Birmingham from their home institution;
  • arrange and cover the cost of self-catering accommodation in Birmingham;
  • if applicable, organise a UKVI letter and fund a visa application;
  • organise access to Library and IT services;
  • provide a fund against which research expenses for the visit may be claimed. The funds will be agreed between the proposer and the IAS Deputy Director at the point of approval, to allow support for the research proposal and public events;
  • support networking through meetings and events across the University;
  • organise and support public events and workshops agreed with the dissemination plan.

The academic hosting Department/School will:

  • work with IAS and the DVF to plan implementation of the objectives and dissemination plan. 

Assessment and Selection

Normally, an internal selection panel comprising Directors of Research or their nominees will advise the Director of the IAS.

Applications will be assessed against the following criteria:

  • Academic excellence and standing against career stage of the proposed DVF;
  • The extent to which the visit will enhance existing collaborative research or pump prime new areas;
  • The value of the research outputs and their impact;
  • Tangible outputs and the potential benefit of the outputs to the University of Birmingham in the REF2020 submission in terms of engagement, impact, high quality publications and grant income generation.

The Distinguished Visiting Fellow will be expected to:

  • Participate in IAS activities and engage with staff and research students in relevant Departments, Schools and Colleges at The University of Birmingham;
  • Present an IAS seminar and or public lecture;
  • Write a short report on activities and achievements against objectives outlined at application stage (within 6 months of the end of the fellowship);
  • Acknowledge IAS support in any publications resulting from their period of stay in Birmingham;
  • Become a member of the cohort of IAS DVF alumni group.


A new call for DVF applications will be opened soon, upon which deadlines for these proposals will be announced.

Please contact Sue Gilligan to discuss the submission of proposals outside these deadlines.  

Colleagues may wish to contact the IAS to establish the potential suitability of a prospective Vanguard Fellow before approaching them: such informal enquiries may be directed to Sue.

Proposals from Internal Sponsor 

  • A case for support of up to 500 words from the internal sponsor to demonstrate fit to the objectives of the scheme and likely outcomes from the collaboration;
  • A dissemination plan with specifics that will be delivered during the visit (e.g. seminar, workshop, public lecture, webinars, blog) and subsequently (e.g. publications, new research projects) which will demonstrate the value of the visit to the academic community and external stakeholders and organisations;
  • Short CV of applicant;
  • Confirmation from the applicant that if IAS were to offer a Fellowship they would accept, together with an indication of when they expect to be in Birmingham.

Where there is a need to move quickly to secure exceptional individuals, Directors of Research and the Director of the IAS will fast-track applications and sign off proposals outside the published deadlines.

Please download an archived version of the proposal form, to assist in future applications.

For further details on this programme, please contact Sue Gilligan: s.gilligan@bham.ac.uk.

The Institute of Advanced Studies Internal Fellowship programme can provide resources and time to support the internal sponsor whilst developing projects from the collaboration. Please see our IAS Internal Fellowship (IASF) page for further details.