The Simon Gaunt Postgraduate Travel Grant

The grant is named after Professor Simon Gaunt, a world-leading scholar who transformed the theoretical landscape of medieval studies, as well as a dear colleague and ex-President of the Society. Simon died far too early in 2021, and this grant commemorates his commitment, supportiveness and capacity to inspire as supervisor and mentor for postgraduate students.

The grant is a competitive award, and applications will be judged by a jury composed of the President and Vice-President of the Society and the executive officer in charge of research awards. The aim is to enable postgraduate students to travel abroad for a potentially career-transforming international event or activity (e.g. attendance at a major conference, access to a major collection).

Simon Gaunt Travel Grant


  • The grant is open only to postgraduate research students (PhD, MA by Research or equivalent) enrolled on a programme in any aspect of French Studies at a university in Britain or Ireland. Applicants must be enrolled in a department or on a programme specifically concerned with French i.e. where studying material in the original languages (here primarily French and Occitan) is a structural requirement and part of teaching programmes.
  • At the time of application the applicant must not yet have submitted their thesis/dissertation.
  • Applicants must be members of the Society for French Studies.

Award recipients will be asked to present a short report on the activities enabled by the grant, which may appear in the Society’s publication the French Studies Bulletin.

The application should take the following form:

  • An account of your qualifications and current stage of postgraduate study. Detail other sources of research funding available to you.
  • A statement of the planned study and its benefits for your own research and for the wider sub- field of French Studies within which you are working. Maximum 1000 words.
  • A budget for the trip with costings and the total sum requested.
  • A short note of support from your supervisor.

Applications will be judged on the quality and feasibility of the objectives to be achieved during the study abroad, and the projected outcomes of the award for the applicant and for their research field.

Funding: travel costs, conference fees if applicable, plus a stipend based on the estimate of expenses presented in the application.

Project length: typically 5 -10 days. This could be extended if a strong case is made.

Maximum grant: £1000

There will normally be one grant awarded per year, but where funding allows this may extend to two or more.

Timetable: Applications open March 1st 2024

Closing date: April 12th 2024

Projects start: June-December 2024.

Applications should be sent to: the President of the Society for French Studies, Professor Diana Holmes

Professor Diana Holmes

School of Languages, Cultures, and Societies
University of Leeds
Woodhouse Lane
West Yorkshire
United Kingdom