The SHNH site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our privacy policy.


Society for the History of Natural History

SHNH Small Research Fund

SHNH Small Research Fund

Purpose of SHNH Small Research-Fund

To provide financial support to non-professional members of the SHNH in all fields covered by the society’s charitable purpose in carrying out research to benefit the scholarly community. A “non-professional” is regarded as having no gainful specific employment as a historian or bibliographer for the specific purpose of the proposed research.

Application process

Application must be made (before incurring the expense requested) using the pro-forma on the SHNH website. This must be downloaded, completed, and transmitted to the SHNH Secretary, who will then forward it to the Small Research-Fund Co-ordinator for assessment by the Sub-committee.

Qualifying expenses for funding

Examples are:

  • Charges made for use of privately-owned or professional-association libraries or museums by non-subscribers.
  • Charges made by libraries or museums for new scanning, photographing or photocopying essential materials.
  • Charges made by photographic agencies, libraries or museums for providing pre-existing digital copies.
  • Fees for image-publication rights.
  • Cost of travel by public transport for an essential visit to a unique location of essential material.

How to apply

  • As long as you are not a professional historian or bibliographer (for the purpose of a specific research project), any member of the SHNH may apply for a Small Research-Fund grant, up to £100 (or non-Sterling currency equivalent).
  • Please download the pro-forma application form, complete it and send to the SHNH Secretary at


  • There is no upper age limit; no academic qualification is required; nor is any academic affiliation necessary. But no more than one application per person may be made in any financial year of the SHNH.
  • Non-professional researcher applicants must not already be in receipt of any grant, as a student or otherwise, that would cover the expenses applied for. Application must be made before the requested expense is incurred.

Further conditions

  • This funding is a “last-resort” grant. Alternative “free-of-charge” sources of images or information must already have been investigated; if none can be identified, all reasonable efforts must also have been made to obtain funding elsewhere before applying to the SHNH.
  • The successful applicant must submit a brief, one-paragraph report of the achievements of the research to the SHNH secretary.
  • It must be the applicant’s intention to publish in the scholarly press or on a website any images or information obtained through an award; the SHNH Secretary must be informed of publication when completed.
  • Dated receipts must be obtained for expenses.
  • Costs involved in attendance at conferences do not qualify.
  • Costs of coloured illustrations in the printed Archives of Natural History do not qualify.
  • The decision of the SHNH on an application for a Small Research-Fund grant shall be final.