The Scottish Government, the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research (SCCJR) and the Scottish Institute for Policing Research (SIPR) are offering short-term fellowships to those who have nearly completed their PhDs or recent PhD graduates to develop their careers by developing their research into publications and associated materials for policy, practice and academic audiences.

There is substantial untapped resource in PhDs completed in Scotland on policing, crime, justice and related issues (e.g. healthcare in justice settings, domestic violence) and we are seeking to support further knowledge exchange and dissemination.

These fellowships will commence in December 2021.


• Fellowships are intended for those who are not holding permanent academic or other full-time employment, who have recently completed, or are near to submission of, their PhD. Applicants will only be eligible to apply if they will have submitted their PhD by the commencement of the Fellowship ( indicative start will be mid December 2021) or if their PhD has been awarded a maximum of 18 months before the start of the Fellowships (indicative mid June 2020). Any absence in consequence of family related leave (e.g. maternity, paternity, parental and adoption leave) or sickness absence in consequence of a disability (within the meaning of the Equality Act 2010) should not be taken into account in calculating these time periods.
• Successful candidates will be expected to provide either a confirmation from their supervisor that their PhD will be submitted before they commence the fellowship (anticipated to be mid December 2021), or if they have already successfully completed their PhD, confirmation of the date of award of PhD. This will be requested prior to any formal award of Fellowship.

Students from all Universities are eligible to apply, however, a PhD directly related to matters of crime and justice in Scotland is a necessary criteria for application.

Purpose of the Fellowships

The key purpose of the Fellowships is to:

• support PhD students who have recently completed their PhDs or are nearing submission to distil the key findings from the PhD thesis and to consider how best to communicate with the main audiences in both a policy/practitioner and academic field, including through submission to academic journals. Fellows will be asked to consider implications/impacts of COVID-19 on their area of research in the application form, if appropriate.
• through use of written, visual and oral presentation, including traditional publication forms as well as more innovative and interactive approaches, support Fellows to better understand how to maximise impact of and engagement with their findings.
• through working with policy and/or practitioners in their field, help Fellows improve their understanding of the role of research in policy/ practice.
• contribute to capacity building in the field of crime and justice research including, through support from mentors, to explore potential for Fellows to submit grant applications to further their work.

The funding for the fellowships will be for £5,000 and we expect to support 6 applicants. The Fellowships can be either a full time or part time commitment, but they should be completed within 7 months of commencement.

In addition to the £5,000 funding, the Fellowships will include:

• a session led by policy makers and analysts on why, how and when they need evidence and what they find most useful.
• a writers retreat/workshop to develop skills in writing for a policy or practice audience.
• mentoring from a Scottish Government analyst and a policy maker/practitioner.
• Fellows being hosted/made an associate member of an institution in SCCJR/SIPR.
• comments on outputs from a policy maker/practitioner in the policy area of interest and a Scottish Government analyst.
• publication of outputs by SCCJR as part of a Fellowship series, including support in editing and presentation, with cross publication of policing relevant projects on the SIPR website.
• the opportunity to present your work at a mini-conference in 2022 with other successful applicants.

Academic Mentors

Applicants will be expected to have an academic mentor, this can either be a mentor identified by the applicant and who has agreed to fulfil the role as outlined below, or a mentor can be arranged by SCCJR/SIPR for applicants who have not been able to identify their own academic mentor.

Those who do not have an academic mentor arranged, and who wish assistance, should get in touch with Alistair Fraser (, SCCJR, or Liz Aston (, SIPR, as soon as possible. The name of academic mentors will need to be included in application forms, so applicants should note the closing date for applications and get in touch asap.


Expected Role of Academic mentors

Applicants should obtain consent from academic mentors to the following role:

– Meeting at least three times between January 2022 and July 2022

– Providing constructive feedback on plans and drafts of outputs

– Being invited to all events, including the half-day session with policy and JAS officials about research and policy/practice; writing retreat; end of fellowship conference

– Offering advice about and support career development in academic and non-academic pathways, building professional networks, strengthening the engagement and impact of one’s research.

Academic mentors will be expected to sign the application form to confirm that they are aware of the expected role.

Expected Outputs

Each Fellow will prepare a short summary of their research topic consisting of 3-5 pages, which will be reviewed, edited and published on the SCCJR website, and additionally with the option of publishing these on the SIPR website. These will be open access and publicly available but Fellows retain copyright over their work.

We expect that either a sole authored academic article and/or grant application will flow from the Fellowship, with the support of Mentors. These will require to be submitted within 6 months of completion of the Fellowship.

Fellows are also asked to outline further proposed dissemination approaches in the application form, which could include infographics, podcasts etc, and mentors will offer guidance in the development of these approaches as appropriate.

Indicative Timescales

Fellows should be in a position to participate in all fellowship activities, and to complete the Fellowship, to the indicative timescales below:

Grant award letters issued and Fellowships | start December 2021

Policy Making and Evidence session with SG policy | January 2022

Writing workshop | April 2022

Policy briefing draft submitted for comments | Mid June 2022

Final Policy briefings submitted | Mid July 2022

Final conference | November 2022

Journal article submitted and/or grant Application | submitted February 2023

The current COVID situation and the way we work

Applicants will be aware that the current COVID situation, whilst significantly improving, may still be impacting on the way we work during the Fellowship period, and it may well be that much of the activity outlined above will need to be done remotely. We will seek to ensure that we arrange this in a way that suits successful applicants as far as is reasonably possible.


The Scottish Government, SCCJR, and SIPR are committed to eliminating discrimination and promoting equality and diversity, and applications are welcome from students from all backgrounds.

Applicants must complete and submit the application form by 12pm on 20 October 2021.

Academic mentors must sign the application form, to confirm that they have agreed to adopt the role as specified.

Personal data

We need your personal information to allow us to assess your application to the Scheme and if successful, administer funding to you. We also need your data to contact you by post, email or telephone.

The link contains the details of the Privacy notice applicable to this Fellowship, please read this Notice before applying

Application Assessment

A panel composed of SG Justice Analytical Services, SCCJR and SIPR representatives will review the applications.

Criteria for Assessment of applications will be:

-Clarity of expression in explaining the PhD topic and key questions it seeks/sought to answer
– The extent to which it is directly related to matters of crime and justice in Scotland and to the Scottish Justice system.
– Relevance and timeliness of doctoral topic for dissemination to policy and practice audiences, including in the current COVID context
– Useful and engaging/innovative ideas about forms of output and dissemination, and the way in which these will maximize impact of and engagement with findings amongst the relevant audiences
– Feasibility of timeline, including any other work commitments

SCCJR Partnership

The Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research (SCCJR) worked in funded partnership with the Scottish Government Justice Analytical Services Division between 2006 and 2016. Through this relationship, numerous PhD projects were developed and won funding (through CASE awards, and ESRC AQM, Collaborative and Pathway streams) to conduct research on policy relevant issues. SCCJR aims to communicate its research to a range of audiences and is investing in this initiative.

SIPR Partnership

The Scottish Institute for Policing Research (SIPR), is a strategic collaboration between 14 of Scotland’s universities, Police Scotland, and the Scottish Police Authority, and since 2007 has supported applicable research by PhD students to help the police meet the challenges of the 21st century and for achieving international excellence for policing research in Scotland. SIPR is pleased to support this initiative to maximise the knowledge exchange of evidence-based research that can contribute to policing policy and practice.


For any enquiries around assistance with getting an academic mentor, or for any other enquiries of an academic nature, please contact SCCJR or SIPR at the contacts noted above

For all other enquiries, please contact the Scottish Government –

For more information please see our Scottish Justice Fellowships 2021/22: Q&A

Associated People

Related Publications

February 2024

SJF Briefing: Experiences of ‘Going Out’ for People Living with Dementia in Scotland

Experiences of ‘Going Out’ for People Living with Dementia in Scotland: Findings and Implications for Policy and Practice Dr Katie […]

December 2023

SJF Briefing: How is Human Trafficking Regulated in the UK?

How is Human Trafficking Regulated in the UK? A Critical Examination of the UK’s Anti-Trafficking Response This Scottish Justice Research […]

December 2023

SJF Briefing: Bereavement and Imprisonment: Prisoners’ experiences of death-related grief

This Scottish Justice Fellowship briefing by Dr Tia Simanovic provides an overview of key messages from her doctoral research on […]