Answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the Academy fellowships.

How can I find out about fellowship opportunities at the QEII Academy?

Information about fellowship opportunities is available on the Chatham House website. You can also sign up to receive updates from the Academy or follow us on Twitter @QEII_Academy.

Are there any age restrictions?

No, we do not impose age restrictions for applicants. However, Academy fellowships are aimed at individuals at the mid-stage of their career and have at least five years of relevant work experience.  Academy  senior  fellowships  are  aimed  at  individuals  who  are  at  a  more  advanced  stage  of  their  career and  have  ten or more  years  of  experience.

Can I undertake other work or study at the same time as my fellowship?

Fellows are expected to work full-time towards their fellowship and therefore it is not possible to undertake a fellowship at the same time as pursuing work or studies (such as for a PhD). 

When can I apply?

Usually every year around the beginning of April and August a new call for applications is posted on the Academy section of the Chatham House website.

How can I apply?

Please download and complete the application form from the Chatham House website. Email the application form, together with one short published writing sample in English, of which you are the sole author (no more than 10 A4 pages). All files must be submitted in English and sent in PDF format.

Do I need to send letters of reference?

No. Please provide the names, affiliations, work addresses, email addresses and telephone numbers of two referees and indicate your relationship to them. If you are shortlisted, we will contact the referees directly.

May I submit parts of my application after the deadline?

No. It is the candidate's responsibility to ensure that all application materials, including the writing sample, are submitted by the application deadline. Only complete applications will be considered.

May I include supplementary materials with my application?

No, please include only the requested items. Supplementary materials cannot be considered or returned.

What is the application fee?

There is no application fee.

Are further application documents expected (e.g. cover letter or certificates)?

No, the application is complete if it contains:

  1. An application form.
  2. A curriculum vitae.
  3. A research project proposal.
  4. A post-fellowship plan.
  5. One short writing sample.
  6. The names of two referees.

How are the applicants assessed?

Applications will be assessed according to the following criteria:

  • Nationality eligibility requirements.
  • Leadership potential.
  • Aptitude to benefit from the broad and inclusive nature of the fellowship.
  • The relevance  and  clarity  of  the  proposed  research  project,  as  demonstrated  through  the  project proposal.
  • Relevant background experience, as demonstrated through the curriculum vitae.
  • Demonstrating the necessary English-language ability.
  • Motivation for undertaking the fellowship.
  • A post-fellowship  plan  which  indicates  how  the candidate  will  return  to  their  home  country  or region and apply their skills and knowledge.

What is the application and selection process?

Fellowships will be advertised on the website and candidates are invited to complete the application form to apply. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to an interview either in person in London (for Robert Bosch fellows) or by Skype which will feature Chatham House senior management and may include a senior representative of the organization sponsoring the fellowship. More information on interview timings and format will be provided to shortlisted applicants by email.

Who evaluates the applications?

Applications will be evaluated by the Academy committee drawn from Chatham House senior management and may include a senior representative of the organization sponsoring the fellowship. All application materials and the selection committee’s evaluations remain confidential. The committee will not provide feedback on individual applications.

If a candidate’s application is unsuccessful, candidates may reapply for future calls and re-applications will not be disadvantaged in the selection process.

What happens after the interview?

Applicants who are successful in their interview will be notified by email and receive contracts setting out the terms and conditions of the fellowship. 

Applicants who are unsuccessful in their interview will be notified by email.

Can I get feedback on my application?

Yes - feedback will be provided where possible. Unsuccessful applicants are encouraged to review this feedback and to re-apply for future fellowships where their research may be relevant. We regret we cannot provide feedback on applications that are not shortlisted for interview.

How will I spend my time at Chatham House?

The Academy presents fellows with a wide range of possible activities whilst at Chatham House. In addition to the Leadership Programme, fellows have the opportunity to participate in meetings with senior decision-makers, attend research roundtables and conferences, contribute to the day-to-day work of their host team, and engage with the media as appropriate to their experience and the topicality of their research

Fellows manage these activities around the work of their personal research project. This encompasses the full timeline of activities involved in a project from refining the research question, to evaluating the best methodology to have impact on the policy problem, budgeting and planning fieldwork, engaging in research, drafting written research outputs and guiding the research through peer review and publication processes. It could also involve organizing events such as roundtables.

Given the large number of activities, events and networks available to the fellows at Chatham House, their principal constraint is typically time. Fellows must therefore use their time wisely to balance their commitments to the Academy Programme, their research project, and opportunities to contribute to the work of their host research team.

When will I start?

The start dates for each intake are usually either mid-September or mid-February. The specific dates are confirmed approximately two months before the start of the fellowship.

What is the duration of the fellowship and is it flexible?

The duration of the fellowship is six months for the Academy senior fellows and from nine (fellows sponsored by the Robert Bosch Stiftung) to twelve months for Academy fellows (all other fellows). Please note there is no flexibility on the duration of fellowships and candidates must be available full-time for the entire duration.

Can the Academy provide me with a UK bank account?

No. The Academy will not be able to assist in opening a UK bank account. However, the Academy can provide a bank with a supporting letter confirming your appointment as an Academy fellow/senior fellow.

Will I receive assistance in applying for a UK visa?

Fellows will receive initial guidance from Academy staff on how to apply for a visa, however the application itself and ensuring the visa is received in time is the responsibility of the fellow. We are happy to answer specific questions in relation to our role as sponsor, such as providing a Certificate of Sponsorship number and confirming details of the fellowship. Chatham House will reimburse the fees associated with obtaining a UK visa, including the healthcare surcharge, however we will not pay the additional charge to expedite an application without prior approval from the Academy. We cannot provide support on getting visas for family members.

Can the Academy provide appropriate health insurance for the duration of the fellowship?

No, the Academy is not able to provide health insurance for fellows. However fellows who are successful in their fellowship application will have to demonstrate to the Academy that they have adequate health insurance provision, which should include cover for any potential repatriation costs. 

Can I bring my family with me?

Yes. However, we cannot sponsor visas or provide health insurance for spouses and dependants. We are also unable to provide any logistical support (medical insurance, information on schools, nurseries) or provide financial support for dependants. Fellows will be responsible for arranging visas and insurance for dependants.

What kind of administrative support will I receive?

While secretarial assistance is not provided, fellows will be supported by a research department coordinator in basic administrative or logistical tasks, such as travel arrangements for external meetings or organizing workshops at Chatham House. Fellows will be given a dedicated desk and computer access.

Will I receive assistance in finding accommodation in London?

If required, the Academy will provide accommodation in a hotel on arrival (up to 7 days), or will reimburse private accommodation the fellow has secured for the same period. During this time it is expected that fellows will organize viewings and arrange appropriate accommodation. Fellows should plan to move into their accommodation prior to starting the fellowship. Fellows will be given a guide detailing websites and agencies recommended for finding accommodation as well as contact information for Goodenough College, where many of our fellows stay.

Will I receive financial assistance to cover the expense of travelling to London?

Yes. The Academy will provide you with economy class travel from your country of residence. At the conclusion of your fellowship the Academy will provide you with the same for your return to your country of residence.

What stipend can I expect?

During their time at Chatham House, fellows and senior fellows will receive a monthly stipend to cover basic living expenses. This will be detailed in a successful applicant’s award letter. Typically senior fellows receive approximately £3,100, fellows £2,000, and Robert Bosch fellows the UK sterling equivalent of €3,000 per month.  Please note these figures are subject to change and are indicative only.

Stipends will be paid into a UK bank account that the fellow will open on arrival. In addition, the Academy will provide one return trip to the UK from the fellow’s country of residence, accommodation in a hotel on arrival (if required), and provide a small budget for fieldwork and research-related travel during the fellowship. The Robert Bosch fellowship will fund the candidates travel to the UK for a face to face interview whilst all other fellowship interviews are conducted via Skype.

Is the stipend sufficient to cover London living expenses?

While living in London can be expensive, the stipend should be sufficient to cover reasonable accommodation, utilities, food, transport and other basic expenses. The following is intended to provide a rough guide on the cost of living essentials in London.

  • Accommodation: £125-150 per week for a shared house or room in a halls of residence.
  • Bills (e.g. water, electricity, gas, internet): £70-100 per month.
  • Food: £40-60 per week.
  • Transport: £25-40 per week. Buying a monthly or annual Oyster travelcard will provide the best value.

What have past fellows gone on to do?

Fellows may return to their former institutions in a new role and apply the skills, knowledge, network and self-awareness gained at the Academy. Some fellows also use their fellowship to transition into new sectors or roles. Past fellows at Chatham House have gone on to work in diverse fields including academia, government and the NGOs.

What are Academy associates?

At the end of their time with the Academy all fellows can become Academy associates when they have completed all the tasks required of them and demonstrated an intention to continue working on the issues they focused on during their fellowship. As an Academy associate, fellows can continue their affiliation with Chatham House and have their contributions to the Academy and Chatham House recognised. Academy associate status will last for up to two years after the completion of a fellowship.

Will I still have access to Chatham House once my fellowship is finished?

Yes, when fellows conclude their fellowships and have met all their obligations, they will receive 5 years’ complimentary membership of Chatham House. This will allow access to all members events, whether at the institute or online, the Chatham House library, and access to member-only sections of the Chatham House website.