Researcher development

We continually invest in academic talent and provide an environment that enables our researchers to thrive and succeed. 

Crucible programme

We run the Crucible Programme at Leeds which is designed as a development programme for early career academics. Participants are sought from across the University to break down barriers between disciplines. Time and space away from the ‘day job’ allows people to develop novel ideas and methods. External speakers are invited to provoke challenge-led research ideas using creative thinking approaches. 

The outcomes are wide-ranging and include:

  • developing new research skills
  • gaining experience of commercialisation
  • collaborating with new partners to enable novel research projects, new publications and becoming involved in national committees

University Academic Fellows (UAFs)

We have recently recruited 180 University Academic Fellows (UAFs). These are future research leaders who follow a structured five year development and induction programme leading to a permanent position at the level of Associate Professor and Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy. 

Future Leader Fellows

The UK Research and Innovation Future Leaders Fellowships is an initiative to grow the strong supply of talented individuals needed to ensure a vibrant environment for research and innovation in the UK.

University of Leeds researchers have been awarded Future Leader Fellowships in each of the cohorts so far.

In cohort 4 these were Dr Yoselin Benitez-Alfonso and Dr Catherine Walsh.

In cohort 3, Dr Charisma Choudhury , Dr Lucy Stead and Dr James Poulter.

In cohort 2, Dr Laura Carter from the Faculty of Environment; Dr Richard Mann from the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences; Dr Izzy Jayasinghe, Dr Laura Dixon and Dr Karen Michelle Davies, all from the Faculty of Biological Sciences.

They will focus on bolstering resilience by examining risks and adaptability for plant and soil systems, understanding community interactions and developing new technology to better understand our changing environment.

They join three other Leeds academics: Dr Lauren Gregoire, Dr Katie McQuaid and Dr Alexander Valavanis, who were appointed as Fellows in the first cohort. 

Michael Beverley Innovation Fellowship Programme

This unique 12-month fellowship programme aims to build innovation culture and develop the next generation of academic entrepreneurs at the University of Leeds. 

The fellowship will help early to mid-career researchers to contribute to the strategic direction of research and innovation within their faculty; deliver impact through their research on society, policy and business; and further their personal development.

Fellows will have access to an inspiring network of trusted business experts, senior academics and University of Leeds alumni, through our Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) based mentoring programme, which matches a dedicated group of three mentors to every one fellow. 

In becoming a Michael Beverley Innovation Fellow, not only will these academics be accelerating their own research journey, they will also be a part of the creation of an outward facing and entrepreneurial culture which will become a USP for the University, and will build the reputations of both the University and the city of Leeds as destinations where entrepreneurs can thrive.

Find out more and register your interest in the Michael Beverley Innovation Fellowship Programme.

Research leaders

Through our ‘top performers’ scheme, we recruit academics who excel in their field, are recognised for their first-rate research reputation and lead research groups or institutes.

These research leaders share our commitment to solving global problems and are instrumental in growing key research areas. In addition, they often chair prestigious committees, research council panels or editorial boards and provide professional guidance by being trustees or members of external bodies.

Some of our research leaders include Professor Alejandro Franji, Diamond Jubilee Chair in Computational Medicine and Professor Helen Gleeson, Head of Physics.

Vibrant PhD community

Leeds Doctoral College creates a real sense of community and shared endeavour among our 3,000 postgraduate researchers. It brings together support and opportunities to enhance the postgraduate experience at Leeds. The College runs regular events including the annual Doctoral College showcase and Research Nights. Read more about celebrating your research.

At a local level, we have graduate schools within our faculties; they provide training and host conferences, seminars and social events for research students.