Enabling Future Research Leaders 

Working together to support researcher development

The Future Leaders Fellows Development Network has been developing and delivering leadership development for researchers and innovators within the culture change landscape across the four nations of the UK since 2020. ​ 

By sharing our expertise, experience and resources, we aim to empower future research leaders, their teams, and research support professionals to enhance research leadership development in their organisations. 

We invite professionals who support researchers in HE and industry to:

  • get involved in our assessment of research leadership development needs
  • request support with programme development
  • collaborate on projects to enhance future researcher development
  • make use of, and feedback on, a range of our resources

What we offer

Organisations working with future research leaders can draw on a range of support from the Network. Contact us at hello@flfdevnet.com to discuss how we can support you in supporting your research leaders.

We will be offering ‘train the trainer’ events on:

  • equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI)
  • facilitating leadership retreats
  • running interdisciplinary mentoring schemes.​ 

More information and booking will be available soon. In the meantime, contact us at hello@flfdevnet.com to find out more and express an interest.

Train the Trainer: Leadership Retreats
The Network has developed a successful three-day Leadership Retreat tailored to research fellows who are recruiting and leading their first group. It has run nine times, at venues throughout the UK, and received tremendous feedback from participants. We are keen to share our materials and insights with colleagues in the sector who are interested in running leadership retreats for new research leaders or fellows.

Who is this training for?
This workshop would suit any experienced facilitator who wishes to run a leadership retreat and would benefit from practice sharing, access to developed materials and the opportunity to practice using them in a safe environment. We think that you will find the workshop most useful if you are experienced in working with researchers or in the research and innovation environment.

COMING SOON – Resources to support you in delivering our bespoke researcher development programmes developed by the Network: 

  • Guidance resource: Establishing and Managing a 360 Feedback and Coaching Programme 
  • Online toolkit: Creating and Managing an Interdisciplinary Mentoring Programme

The Network will be facilitating networking opportunities for researcher developers and future research leaders to share best practice​.

Upcoming networking opportunities will soon be advertised here and in our newsletter. In the meantime, if you would like to get involved, email hello@flfdevnet.com to express an interest.

The Network and UKRI run events together which give insights into the Future Leaders Fellowships.

Our next insight event will be open to all research professional staff supporting academics with the preparation of applications to UKRI Future Leaders Fellowships and will include:

  • An overview of the Future Leaders Fellows Development Network
  • A chance to compare experiences of the inclusive selection process
  • An opportunity to work with UKRI colleagues who run the Fellowships

Booking for this event will soon be available here and through our newsletter. In the meantime, contact us at hello@flfdevnet.com if you would be interested in attending.

A range of resources to support you with researcher development have been made available by the Network, many under a Creative Commons licence to allow ease of reuse. Other new resources are in development and will be available soon.

Stay up to date with the support and resources we offer researcher developers and be the first to find out about opportunities to collaborate with us.

UKRI FLF Insights  2024

These short resources are “crowd sourced” documents co-created by organisers and attendees at FLF Insights workshops 2024. These were attended by over 200 research support professionals and led by Sara Shinton from the FLF Development Network (also Roving Panel member for the FLF selection process), with Elsa Fouragnan (FLF), Mel Buckley and Matthew Freeman from UKRI.

The aim of these documents is to provide prospective applicants to the FLF scheme with prompts to help them prepare an effective proposal.

Get involved

We welcome host and industry engagement, and are currently working with institutes and companies to understand the need for researcher leadership development and to refine what is required.

Help us support cultural change by providing insights into what you need. For example, challenges and barriers when working with this career stage of researcher​, regional offers, networks.

Share your views in our survey or email us at hello@flfdvenet.com.

Our aims and objectives


We intend to:

  • support prospective Future Leaders Fellows/UKRI Fellow and Innovator institutes and companies to position themselves to become ‘Research Leader Ready’​
  • provide experiential and data-driven evidence to engage, support and progress institutes and companies who do not have the infrastructure or resources to deliver a comprehensive Fellow/Innovator support programme
  • share the Network’s broad range of resources to help hosts develop their support for fellows and others – moving resources into the public space
  • drive cultural change by disseminating best practice in researcher development, continually learning, analysing and improving the offer
  • work with researcher developers to understand the needs of stakeholders and develop bespoke support offers – for example, Why do post-1992 HEI have less fellows? What do industry hosts require to support the growth in industry fellows and innovators?
  • provide networking opportunities for sharing best practice on culture change, key agendas, such as the Place agenda, and researcher development.

Resources from the Network


A suite of resources to support researcher and innovators across a diverse range of topics, made available under a Creative Commons licence to use within your own organisation.

Run your own 360

Resources to support you in setting up and administering your own version of our bespoke research leadership 360 Feedback programme.

Research Insights

A series of six films connecting researchers with the different ways that their research can influence policy, the arts, business and industry.

Run your own Mentoring

A toolkit to support you in crating and managing your own version of our bespoke leadership mentoring programme.

Policies and guidance

The Network has devised a range of policies and guidance documents which you are welcome to download and use or adapt to suit your context.

Resources from Fellows

Resources created by Future Leaders Fellows with the support of the Network.

Next Generation Research

A podcast spotlighting six of the UK’s best researchers. Professor Giles Yeo introduces you to Future Leaders Fellows and their ground breaking research that is shaping how we’ll live tomorrow.

Researcher Wellbeing

A new Researcher Wellbeing Toolkit (RES-WELL) designed to help research institutions bring about cultural change in the way they support researchers, including those working on emotionally challenging topics.

Collaboration examples

A collection of articles which explore support the Network has provided and our collaboration with other institutes and companies.

Network publications

Contact us

If you’d like to talk with us about how we might support you in your  research leadership development fill in the form below or email hello@flfdevnet.com.

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