The aim of the Funds is to assist social anthropologists, handicapped by lack of funds, who are in the final stages of completing a doctorate.  The resources of the Funds are limited, and awards are necessarily small.

There are four criteria determining grant eligibility:   

(a) Only students registered in UK and Commonwealth institutions teaching social anthropology are eligible.

(b) Applicants to the 30 April round must expect to submit their thesis between the following May and November; applicants to the 30 November round must expect to submit their thesis between the following December and April.  Applicants and their referees should make clear how far writing-up has progressed;  referees must be able to assure the Trustees that the candidate will complete during the appropriate period.  Because the grants at their disposal are sufficient only to contribute towards final costs of completion, the Trustees will interpret this condition rigorously.  A delayed application is recommended when no such assurance can be made.

(c) Candidates are asked to demonstrate their need for financial assistance towards the production costs of their thesis and during the final period of writing-up.

(d) In awarding grants, the Trustees will temper financial need with consideration of the quality of the candidate’s research:  research potentially of outstanding quality and likely to make an important contribution to social anthropology will be eligible for consideration for a Sutasoma or Firth award.

(e) The trustees reserve the right not to consider any applications not presented in accordance with these Notes for Applicants.

Awards may be made up to £500. The Sutasoma and Firth awards are awarded on the basis of exceptional research quality.  The Firth award may be made up to £750.

Applications should be submitted by the closing dates of 30 April or 30 November. The application must be submitted electronically as a PDF to, with the reference sent separately as a PDF by the referee, direct to the Assistant Director (Administration). Copies of the application form are most readily available on: or from the Assistant Director (Administration).