Trust Funds

The Department of Zoology has a number of trust funds which provide support to undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, research fellows and academic staff from within and outside Oxford University. Listed below are details of the funds available and who is eligible to apply for them. For further information contact the Zoology Trust Funds Administrator at:

Below are details of the trust funds managed by the Department of Zoology of the Department of Plant Sciences.



Bursaries of up to £500 are available from the David Kirby Memorial Fund, and bursaries of up to £600 are available from the Marianne North Exploration Grant and Zoology Travel Bursaries for undergraduates wishing to carry out vacation research (fieldwork, expeditions or laboratory-based). All research must be undertaken in collaboration with, or supervised by, a member of the University. All work must be carried out in a vacation before Finals. The David Kirby Memorial Fund is restricted to undergraduates studying Biological Sciences or Human Sciences, with a preference for projects in the field of reproduction although all areas of biology will be considered. The Marianne North Exploration Grant and Zoology Travel Bursaries are restricted to undergraduates studying Biological Sciences. These bursaries will be awarded to assist undergraduates undertaking fieldwork-based research overseas or in the UK.

For information on how to apply please email:

These two funds are available to students studying biological sciences at Oxford University to enable them to: pursue their studies outside Oxford, attend conferences and broaden their professional experience. Suitable projects might include student-run expeditions or field work that will form part of an assessed research project. Priority will be given to: those whose studies relate to agriculture, forestry or some other use of rural land use; and to undergraduates (although graduate students may also be considered). In the past a low priority has been given to applications from students participating in “volunteer conservation vacations” that charge large fees to participants.

For further information about this fund, please email:


Graduates, Postdocs, Research Fellows & Academic Staff

This Fellowship is open to graduate students, postdocs and research fellows from within and outside Oxford University. Applications are judged on their practicality and potential to make a contribution to insect ecology. Up to £2500 is available.

For details on how to apply please email  the Secretary to the Board of Management at:  

Reports by previous Varley Gradwell Fellows.

This Fund supports research on the developmental biology of invertebrates or vertebrates. Applicants must be researchers within the Department of Zoology (graduate students, postdocs, research fellows and academic staff). Grants are usually less than £2,000 although some larger applications are occasionally considered.   

The subject of developmental biology is interpreted broadly to include embryology, life history evolution, tissue regeneration and development of behaviour. Examples of recent grants awarded include: 

  • Ageing in fruit flies  
  • Deciphering the planarian stem cell regulome 
  • Regulation of spinal cord stem cell specification in lamprey 
  • Sound-producing muscles in Hemiptera 

Elizabeth Hannah Jenkinson Research Fund - list of publications

For further information please contact:

The Boise Trust Fund was established by Charles Watson Boise to support research on the antiquity and evolutionary origin modern Homo sapiens and other hominins, with particular emphasis on the continued exploration of appropriate sites in Africa, and on the early migration of Palaeolithic communities.  Applications are open to Oxford University-based researchers and graduate students. 

For details on how to apply  contact: (Secretary to the Boise Trust Fund).  


Applications are invited for the Varley-Gradwell Travelling Fellowship in Insect Ecology 2021.  Fellowships of up to £2,500 in value are awarded for the support of fieldwork, travel and other activity in the field of insect ecology.  Applicants can be early career post-docs or post-graduates.  For more information on how to apply, please contact Lynne Bradley at:  Closing date for receiving applications: Friday, 30 April 2021.