Local Groups Funding Scheme

Please note that all sponsorship requests must come via the Local Groups Funding Scheme, which must be applied to by your institution's Local Groups Representative (LGR). If your institution does not currently have an LGR and you are interested in taking on the role, please contact the BNA office to express interest.

The aims of the funding scheme are to enable Local Groups (LGs) to benefit their members, resolve issues affecting their members, and to recruit and engage new members. All proposed uses for the funding must be able to demonstrate how they will achieve these aims. Creative ideas for activities that fulfil the Objects of the BNA and engage with as many people as possible are looked on favourably.

Such activities can include but are not restricted to:

  • opportunities to connect neuroscientists across sectors (academic, clinical, commercial)
  • public engagement projects
  • initiatives to build bridges between departments or institutions and facilitate collaboration where it is currently impaired
  • campaigns on local expressions of neuroscience issues that broad sections of the local membership feel strongly about and want to win specific change from a local decision-maker on
  • an individual or a series of seminars*
  • initiatives that support neuroscientists relating to wider issues of neuroscience e.g. using animals in research, neuroethics, working with the media
  • initiatives to recruit new members to the BNA

*Any application for supporting seminars should also include how the activity will directly benefit BNA members and have impact beyond those attending e.g. via live-streaming, associated public engagement event, etc. There should be strong justification for requests that fund purely a stand-alone seminar or seminar series.

Other key pieces of information:

  • Applications can be made throughout the calendar year, but the annual funding period runs from October–September. The annual deadline for applications will therefore be the end of August. If the funding pot for a funding period is depleted due to a high volume of successful applications, you are advised to place your application after the end of September, at which point the new cycle will have begun.
  • Applications must be submitted through the relevant LG Representative (LGR). Please contact your LGR before putting an application together
  • Collaborative proposals submitted by two or more LGRs are welcomed (and funding can be pooled between co-applicants)
  • There is a maximum of £1000 awarded per LG per year, whether via an individual or collaborative application (e.g. a collaborative application involving three Local Groups may apply for a maximum of £3000)

Costs that can be supported include but are not limited to:

  • Room hire
  • Materials for public engagement or campaigning, e.g. flyers, posters, placards
  • Catering
  • Speaker travel expenses
  • Training materials
  • Costs relating to participation by patient and/or public representatives

Costs that cannot be supported include:

  • Remuneration of seminar speakers or BNA members
  • Any activities already available to local BNA members via their university/institute
  • Disproportionate / unreasonable requests with respect to hospitality or subsistence

All proposals must be in line with the BNA’s Equality and Diversity Policy, which can be summarised as a commitment towards equal opportunities, non-discriminatory procedures and practices, with no biases of any kind related to age, background, ethnic origin, education, socioeconomics, personal situation, disability, gender, sexual orientation, religion or belief, or any combination of these. For example, all-male speaker lists will be rejected automatically as a matter of policy.

All applications must include an outline budget.

Complete application form below, or click here to open in new window


Selection process

Applications are selected on a competitive process. They are judged on quality and the extent to which they are deemed to meet the aims of the funding scheme (see above), and their success or amount of funding is not influenced by the size of the Local Group (either in terms of institution or number of BNA members). It is unlikely that all applications will be successful.

Submissions are reviewed by a sub-committee composed of members of the BNA Council and Executive. The sub-committee is chaired by the Local Groups Coordinator, and includes two further members of the Council or Committee (typically the Treasurer and the Education and Engagement Representative) as well as the Membership and Communities Manager.


On completion of the project on which funding has been used, successful applicants must provide two short reports (see below) on the project. This helps publicise the activities of Local Groups, promote the funding scheme, and also to reduce the energy barriers for other Local Groups organising similar projects. Failure to provide the two reports will have a bearing on future decisions to support applications submitted by the Local Group.

The two reports required are:

  1. a magazine-style report / review of the activity, to be sent via email to the BNA Membership and Communities Manager (dani.wijesinghe(at)bna.org.uk) and published as a short news article on the BNA website, to include:
    • key quantitative data (e.g. how many people attended, how many new members joined the BNA because of the project)
    • good-quality photographs of the activity
    • where possible, include quotations from some of those involved (e.g. organisers, speakers, attendees) 
  2. a completed copy of the review form found here, to also be sent via email to the BNA Membership and Communities Manager (dani.wijesinghe(at)bna.org.uk) and then filed in the Local Group Representatives' Dropbox to be used as a reference resource to assist the planning of future projects
    • fill out each of the fields in as much detail as you think will be useful to others 

Reports, in whole or in part, may be published in the BNA's print or online publications.