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The ISSF is a block grant provided to the University from Wellcome. The ISSF Committee receives applications for funding from any department in the University. Research projects must fall within the Wellcome remit, as well as the strategic remit of biomedical research at Oxford. The ISSF Committee especially welcomes cross-divisional bids. The University of Oxford and Wellcome are committed to equality and diversity and the ISSF Committee encourages applications so that the ISSF supports the full range of the diversity of our research staff.

The Oxford-Wellcome Institutional Strategic Support Fund (ISSF) will support strategically important activity across the University of Oxford in biomedical and clinical sciences, public health, social sciences and the medical humanities. The ISSF is open to all researchers across the University of Oxford working in these areas. £1 million per year has been awarded to the University of Oxford by Wellcome for a five-year period (2016-2021). Funding will be allocated across the following funding streams:

Individual Career Support

Main and small awards are available for early career researchers, mid-career researchers and discipline hopping to pump prime activity and facilitate successful applications to external funding schemes. The deadline for applications for Trinity Term 2018 is 25 April 2018 at 5pm.

More details and how to apply ...

Interdepartmental Strategic Initiatives

Support for strategically important equipment, research assets or staff within shared facilities or support to facilitate the establishment of cross-cutting themes.

Main and small award applications will be invited for Trinity Term 2018 with a deadline of 25 April 2018 at 5pm.

More details and how to apply ...

Translational Research

Support for early stage translational projects in order to accelerate the transition from discovery research to translational development projects via the Medical and Life Sciences Translational Fund.

More details and how to apply ...


The ISSF is contributing toward supporting diversity at the University of Oxford. This includes supporting the institutional bids for Athena SWAN Silver and the Race Charter Mark, and the Returning Carers’ Fund small grants scheme.

More details and how to apply to the Returning Carers’ Fund ...

Public Engagement with Research

The ISSF is used to support a culture of Public Engagement with Research (PER) across the University by building capacity (for example through training), raising the profile of PER and supporting reward and recognition (for example through the Vice-Chancellor's Public Engagement with Research Awards). 

Unfortunately this funding stream is not able to support individual PER activities.