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Small Pilot grants

Pilot grants Tenovus

 Small pilot grants

These grants, up to £20,000 dependent on Region, support pump priming research studies of up to 18 months’ duration.

  1. Preference is given to:
    • Preliminary pump priming studies, which are thought likely to lead to subsequent funding from major grant-giving bodies
    • Innovative patient-related projects
    • Early career investigators
    • Applications from investigators lacking other substantive support in the early stages of a new project
    • Recent recruits
    • New collaborations between established investigators
  2. Tenovus Scotland does not fund:
    • Applications which are not properly certificated
    • Applications for work that will be conducted outside of the relevant region
    • Partial funding for projects supported by other grant funds
    • Applications that fail to provide evidence of appropriate ethical permission, or statistical justification for sample/cohort sizes (where appropriate)
    • Equipment for routine patient care or for assessment of new products, which the manufacturer might be expected to finance
  3. Furthermore, while there are no hard rules, Tenovus Scotland does not usually fund:
    • Applications from established investigators for work within their usual field of expertise
    • Applications from PhD students
    • Applications for follow-on work previously funded by Tenovus Scotland, except in exceptional circumstances
  4. Additional points:
    • While Tenovus Scotland is happy to receive applications from postdoctoral researchers, these require clear support from their current supervisor (usually as co-applicants).
    • It is important that the principal investigator has tenure of contract for the duration of the award.  In occasional cases where this is not the case, the nominated co-applicant who will substitute as principal investigator must be clearly identified
    • The proposed start date and project duration should be clearly indicated on the application form
    • The Tenovus Scotland Regional Reference Code for each project must be used on all correspondence including and in particular on all invoices submitted to the relevant Tenovus Scotland region for payment
    • Support is mainly provided for running costs, although support for equipment specifically for the proposed research may be considered. Large awards (Tayside only) and PhD scholarships normally offer salary or stipend support, but salary support is not usually available for Pilot grants
    • All applications will be submitted to detailed peer review
    • We encourage researchers to publish their research in open-access journals.

Please apply to the address below for a Grant Application Form.

Postal codes

to:  Mr J F S Young,
Regional Secretary
Email: Enable JavaScript to view protected content.
Closing date: see below      Grant amount: Up to £12,000

For 2022 Awards due to the limited funds available at present, the TSGHI Committee will be limiting submissions from each of the 3 Regional Research Institutions (the University of Aberdeen, Robert Gordon University, and the University of Highlands and Islands).

The proposal for the 2022 Awards process is that each Institution will put forward their 3 best research projects for the consideration of the TSGHI Committee, and in assessing Awards the Committee will give priority to Projects involving early career researchers (normally post PhD graduates with not more than 5 years post-graduation research work (allowing longer where career breaks involved)). Proposals should also be for applied research projects, relevant to significant local disease conditions / illnesses / treatments.

Electronic applications should be submitted to the contact persons identified below for each of the Research Institutions listed and copied to the Hon. Secretary of the TSGHI Committee. Submissions to the Institutions should be received by 1st February 2022.

Research Institution contact person

For The University of Aberdeen: Despoina Kaloriti Enable JavaScript to view protected content.

For Robert Gordon University: Professor Cherry Wainwright Enable JavaScript to view protected content.

For The University of the Highlands and Islands: Professor Ian Megson Enable JavaScript to view protected content.

And copied to Enable JavaScript to view protected content.


The Research Institutions will forward their 3 Projects to the TSGHI Committee (via the Hon. Secretary at Enable JavaScript to view protected content.) by 23rd March 2022 for their consideration.



to:   Ms E Tait 
Regional Secretary  
Email: Enable JavaScript to view protected content.

Closing date:to be decided      Grant amount: Up to £20,000

DD,  KY, PH to:  Miss Y Gormley
Regional Grants Administrator
Email: Enable JavaScript to view protected content.
Closing date: to be decided      Grant amount: Up to £20,000    
G, DG,  KA, ML, PA

to: Mrs S Ogden
Regional Secretary 
Email: Enable JavaScript to view protected content.
Closing dates: 15 February and 15 September      Grant amount: Up to £20,000


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As an Early Career Researcher, the award of a small project grant from Tenovus Scotland has been the critical first step towards me establishing my own independent research programme, in an area I am passionate about.

Dr Jennifer Greaves

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