• The competition for the academic year 2024 – 2025 is now open
  • The application deadline is Friday 3 May 2024, at 14:00

Would you like to run your own Research Network at CRASSH?

The Research Networks programme offers funding of up to £1,500 per academic year, plus an in-kind contribution in the form of administrative assistance, a platform for virtual and hybrid sessions, and help with running in-person or online events. The programme is open to Cambridge University’s academic staff (UTOs/CTOs), postdocs and postgraduate students, working together with a common interdisciplinary research interest.

Networks generally run throughout the academic year (October to June), with a minimum length of one term. Experimental forms of engagement are encouraged and we are keen to support new ideas for a wide range of activities and to encourage new collaborative initiatives that reach across disciplinary boundaries, including those between the sciences and the humanities.

The convenors of Research Networks must come from more than one Cambridge University faculty or department and they must have an interdisciplinary question at their core. Some Networks go on to form the basis of collaborative publications or grant applications. 

Meeting fortnightly through the academic year at CRASSH helps each Network to deepen their intellectual engagement with their subject and to grow collaborative skills. Network events should be designed in a way that provides genuine opportunities for discussion and collaboration (for example, by including at least one hour for discussion).

CRASSH research networks – what, why and how?

  • Are you considering applying for a research network at CRASSH?
  • Are you looking to find out how your existing network can develop in the future?

In this video, convenors of past networks joined for an informative session and Q&A about:

  • Their experiences running a network
  • Find out what having a network can lead to
  • Questions about the application process
  • Get tips on how to run a network events programme
  • Make the most of your time with CRASSH


Lead applicants should be members of academic staff (UTOs/CTOs), postdocs or postgraduate students based at Cambridge University, and they should represent at least two different disciplines. Each group should also be supported by at least two Faculty Advisors from different departments or faculties within the University.

Your connection to the University of Cambridge must still be in place during the application process and during the whole period in which the Research Network will run. Unfortunately, this does exclude Visiting Fellows (as the main convenor) if they are only based at the University for one academic year. However, Visiting Fellows or members from different universities can participate as co-convenors of the Network.

Networks will not normally be selected if their activities can be supported within a single Faculty.

Research Networks will be selected by a panel led by the Director of CRASSH, at least two invited members from other faculties or departments, and the Research Networks Programme Manager, who will coordinate the selection process and inform the applicants of the result.


  • Financial support of up to £1,500 per academic year is offered for relevant activities (funds can be used for speaker travel, hospitality, accommodation, filming and workshops). Funds for Networks are allocated for the academic year only. Networks funds cannot be carried over to the next academic year and any unspent sums in the agreed budget revert to the CRASSH Research Networks support fund.
  • Administrative assistance for events, publicity and budget management.
  • Assistance with in-person, hybrid or online events for regular fortnightly, two-hour sessions during term time.
  • Publicity via email, newsletter, social media, a video trailer, and the CRASSH blog. A page on the CRASSH website is created for each Network, which includes a brief summary of the group, convenors’ information and the events programme for the academic year.
  • Audio/video recording of seminars and events if required. Recording online is free but any filming or editing costs for in-person events will need to come out of the Network’s budget.
  • It is CRASSH’s policy not to pay for honoraria or publications. However, there is an exception to honoraria for specific cases, but they will need pre-approval by a member of the CRASSH team, and to be included in the agreed budget for the network.

Activities may include seminars, reading groups, discussion forums, guest speaker talks, performances, film screenings, guided walks, visits to museums/collections, hands-on workshops and any other activities that will further the intellectual and collaborative aims of the Network. Networks may also apply for a one-day workshop as part of their programme.

We like our events to be open, inclusive and held at the Alison Richard Building (when possible). However, sessions can be held in a different venue.

Re-applying networks

Networks coming to the end of their funded period may re-apply, if they wish, to continue for a further year. They should do so by completing the application form and downloading and completing a Yearly Report 2023-24. Please email your report to the Research Network Manager (networks@crassh.cam.ac.uk) by the deadline, who will upload it to the Online Application System.

How to apply

Only online applications via the application portal will be accepted: please do not send applications by post or email.

Proposals should give an account of the interdisciplinary nature of the research project and its contribution to innovative areas of research.

In addition, applicants should provide information about any previous activities, any plans for future activities, and a preliminary budget outline, as well as preferred dates and times for events.

Interested applicants should discuss their plans with the Faculty Advisors who will support them. They are also welcome to email the CRASSH Director, Professor Joanna Page, with enquiries about the academic focus or scope of their proposed Network. For any other information, please contact the Research Network Programme Manager.

Proposals should be accompanied by two letters of support from referees, at least one of whom should be from Cambridge, and one of whom may also serve as one of the Network’s Faculty Advisors in the event that the proposal is successful.

Please send your proposal to your referees ahead of your submission. Once you enter your referee information, the system will send an automatic email to your referees with a link for them to upload a note of support. Referees must submit their comments via the online system by the deadline.

Re-applying networks

Networks coming to the end of their funded period may re-apply, if they wish, to continue for a further year. They should do so by completing the application form and downloading and completing a Yearly Report 2023-24. Please email your report to the Research Network Manager (networks@crassh.cam.ac.uk) by the deadline, who will upload it to the Online Application System.



CRASSH has been a fantastic environment for this initiative and this year of study and conversation. It offered a relaxed interdisciplinary space that brought students and scholars in the humanities and social sciences together in a form difficult to achieve in any other setting.
– Archives of Disappeared: Discipline and Method Amidst Ruin (2019-2021)

Becoming a Research Network at CRASSH has really helped to boost our visibility within the University and beyond. We are particularly pleased that these participants came from across the social sciences, humanities and biological sciences, and included students at all levels of graduate study as well as post-doctoral researches, faculty members, and research participants themselves. We have had academics asking for information about the network.
– Critical Approaches to Vulnerability in Empirical Research (2019-2020)

Being able to run regular seminars was of great benefit to the development of our research. We were also able to build our network and base of contacts. A number of the outputs we have completed thus far are directly linked to the connections we made via the group.
– The Alchemical Landscape (2016-2019)

The ‘Things’ seminar series provides a stimulating and sociable meeting place for scholars interested in material culture, and interdisciplinary research inside and outside of Cambridge. The funding CRASSH provides offers us the opportunity to compensate for travel expenses of nearby scholars, thereby allowing us to bring cutting-edge ‘Things’ research to Cambridge.
– Imaginative Things: Curious Objects (2011 – 2018)

The CIPN Network has enriched and expanded our personal research projects in Cambridge. It has provided an excellent opportunity to become aware of diverse voices within the spectrum of performance and theatre and their applicability to human life in general. We hope that the Network continues being a space for intellectual curiosity and inquiry within the realm of Performance studies.
– Cambridge Interdisciplinary Performance Network (2013 – 2019)


Tel: +44 1223 766886
Email enquiries@crassh.cam.ac.uk