Gilchrist Fieldwork Award

Due to the coronavirus pandemic the Gilchrist Educational Trust has suspended its Fieldwork Award for the foreseeable future.
“If you wish to be informed when we are accepting applications again, please email the Secretary on:

This biennial award of £15,000 is offered in even-numbered years to support original and challenging overseas fieldwork carried out by small teams of university academics and researchers.  The Award, created by the Trust in 1990, is intended to cover a significant proportion of the costs of the proposed research.

Eligibility Criteria

• The team should comprise up to 10 members, the majority of whom should be British and hold established posts in university departments or equivalent research establishments;

• The team may come from one or more establishments within the UK ;

• Applicants must show links with the host country, preferably an official invitation or evidence of collaborative links with local agencies - the involvement of local scientific members is encouraged;

• The proposed research should involve a single field season of at least six weeks;

• The research should be original and challenging, preferably of potential applied benefit to the host country or region, it may be multi-disciplinary or devoted to a single scientific objective;

• Official permission to undertake the work is essential.


There is no application form.  Applicants are asked to submit a proposal, which must be received by the Grants Officer at the RGS – IBG

1 Kensington Gore, London SW7 2AR by 22 February.  

A list of the information which must be included in the proposal is available from the RGS – IBG.

Previous Leaders and projects of the Gilchrist Fieldwork Award:-

2018       Dr Melissa Murphy          University College London
Project: High-Arctic Rivers:  A source or sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide?”

2016.  Dr F. Ellwood, University of the West of England. 
Project:  How does the conversion of tropical rainforest to oil palm plantation disturb ecosystem function?

2014. Dr H.L. Burdett, University of St Andrews. 
Project:  Past, present, future.  Determining the climate tolerance thresholds of Maldivian corals, and the impact this has on the nation’s natural capital.

2012. Professor S.E.  Darby, University of Southampton. 
Project:  Mud, Monsoons and the Mekong:  using Tonle Sap Lake sediment records to derive a 5,000 year record of the Asian monsoon and its impacts on Mekong River flood regimes.

2010. An award was not made.

2008. Dr A. Hubbard, University of Aberystwyth. 
Project:  Monitoring and modelling basal dynamics and flow-acceleration across the Greenland Ice Sheet.

2006. Dr N. Stuart, University of Edinburgh. 
Project:  Radar mapping of tropical savannas.

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