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A)  Costing salaries

What level of salary will the Trust support?

The Isaac Newton Trust limits its contribution to salaries to a maximum of point 44 on the PDRA salary scale partly to promote the appointment of early career researchers.

Note, however, that for Leverhulme ECFs the INT guarantees to provide a matched salary contribution only up to the current cap determined by the Leverhulme Trust.

What happens if we wish to appoint a PDRA above pt 44, or at a level that will exceed pt 44 in the course of the grant?

INT recognises that it may sometimes be necessary to offer a higher salary in order to secure or retain the best candidate for the post.  In this case, the Department/Faulty is asked to find the difference in costs between pt 44 and the actual salary point. This applies even if the RA is to be employed part-time – the sum attributed to INT should be costed at no more than pt 44.

Fellowship support – what is the maximum salary support we can apply for?

INT will help make up a partial external fellowship only to the minimum PDRA salary only ie pt 41 at the point of appointment.

Should I include on-costs (NI and pension) in the salary calculations?

Yes, and inflation, if the award is to be for more than 1 year.

If the start of the grant is delayed and salary costs increase as a result, will INT increase its grant to cover this?

No, the amount of the INT grant is fixed at the outset and cannot be increase in the event of unforeseen salary increases.

Does the INT make any contribution for overheads?


Does the Trust pay the Apprenticeship Levy as part of the on-costs?


Do INT provide assistance with relocation, visas or health charges?


B)  Other employment matters

Do RAs have to be employed by the University to be funded by the Trust?

Yes, or a one of the Colleges. The Trust will not support work done by employees of other institutions unless they also have official employment status in Cambridge, or exceptionally, the Trust may provide a contribution to pay for local field assistants. 

The intended RA has not yet obtained his/her PhD when can the PDRA grant start?

The Trust will not confirm a grant before the PhD thesis has been submitted.

Will the Trust fund RAs who do not hold a PhD?

The Trust is occasionally willing to fund researchers who have not gained a PhD qualification but are otherwise highly skilled, but only where this is specifically justified 

Does INT fund PhD students?

No, neither salaries nor research costs (except those part-funded through the AHRC DTP)

Does INT pay parental leave/sick pay?

Research grants: no, the Trust will make no further contribution to cover the costs of any maternity or medical leave, provision for which is the responsibility of the applicant's own institution. However, the Trust will normally approve applications for no-cost extensions to the end date of the grant to accommodate parental or sick leave.

Research fellowships: yes, the Trust will pay its proportionate share of the costs of maternity and medical leave according to the policy of the partner institution or funding body.

If you have other questions on this topic, please contact the Trust.

We will add to these notes and FAQs periodically

Trustees' Meeting Dates

Thursday 11 July 2024

Thursday 21 November 2024

Thursday 13 March 2025


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