UCCL Travel and Study Grants

UCCL is able to provide limited financial support for university level research and advanced study that is directly connected with China. Maximum grants are for £2000.


  • China-based scholars (in any discipline in the arts, sciences or social sciences) who seek to make China-focused research visits to the UK, or British-based scholars working on relevant subjects at UK universities and wishing to undertake visits to China for specific China-related research or lecture reasons.
  • The grants are normally given to those studying for PhDs or equivalent, postdoctoral and early career researchers.
  • Grants can also be made to those on the Academic Staffs of UK or Chinese Universities, who otherwise comply with the UCCL criteria.
  • Grants are given to cover flights and modest living expenses, plus occasionally academic and research costs, but only if no other source is available.
  • Grants to attend academic conferences in China and the UK will only be entertained where conferences have a particular China-related focus, and if the applicant has been invited to speak or take a leading role on the panel or similar. Only scholars from China who are currently studying at, or on the academic staff of, a university in China may apply for support to attend conferences in the UK.
  • Grants are also available for the promotion and teaching of Chinese and other Chinese studies in the UK.
  • China is deemed to mean the whole of the People’s Republic of China, including Hong Kong, but not Taiwan.

The UCCL has to screen a large number of applications; those seeking grants will therefore help themselves considerably if they ensure that their applications are tidy and succinct. Allowance will of course be made for those for whom English is not their first language.

Application restrictions

  • The UCCL will view with little enthusiasm repeat bids for projects which have already enjoyed an initial grant from the UCCL. In such cases, applicants would have to give cogent reasons why the initial bid had not made adequate provision.
  • Retrospective bids will not be considered.
  • Confirmation will be required, in relevant applications, that the applicant has sought clearance for the project from his or her ethics committee.


In making its decisions the Executive Council relies heavily on the references which support the applications. Applicants should make those writing references aware of these points. Two references are preferable, but one might suffice if it manages to cover the following ground:

  • References must be provided at the instigation of the applicant.
  • The purpose of the references is to provide to the Executive Council (EC) confidence that the project will in some way improve the overall level of UK-China academic exchange and that the investment which the UCCL is being asked to make will provide gain for the wider academic community. The content of the reference will therefore depend on the nature of the application.
  • The EC will be interested in the qualifications and potential of the applicant, his or her formal status if a postgraduate (and, when applicable, when the applicant was upgraded), the aims of the project, its academic content, the relationships involved and the likely content and distribution of the product.
  • At least one of the references should refer specifically to the proposed project and to its relevance to the applicant’s overall research. It would help the Executive Council if it referred also to any personal circumstances of the applicant relevant to the project.
  • References must be written in English, must be signed (scanned or mailed) and must state clearly the relationship between their authors and the applicants or projects.
  • References should be in letter form.

Guidelines for costing

In considering applications for grants, the UCCL will use the following guideline costs (2022): ‘Variations and short term increases in the costs of flights (mainly due to the pandemic) can be taken into account if the applicant demonstrates that he or she has searched for the most cost-effective tickets’.

Return flights – Up to £1000 from London/Beijing return.

Food/accommodation – Up to £100/day in UK and £80/day in China for academic staff on short visits. £55/day for students wanting to stay longer.
Conference, registration costs – Flat fee of £100.
Visa – Flat fee of £200.
Covid-19 – During current travel restrictions and the related requirements to isolate, the UCCL will contribute up to £500 extra to cover costs of isolation in hotels if the travel is a necessary part of the project being funded.


Information for Applicants

Applications and enquiries should be addressed to:

NB: During the current pandemic, any postal applications should be sent to ‘UCCL, The Barn House, Lees Hill, South Warnborough, Hook, Hampshire RG29 1RQ’.

Universities’ China Committee in London (UCCL)
Swire House
59 Buckingham Gate
☎ 020 7963 9480

☎ 07771 596 599

For more information please visit: https://www.gbcc.org.uk/educational-grants/universities-china-committee-in-london-uccl


You can download the application form and instructions here:

UCCL Grants Application Form

UCCL Application Instructions