First Grants Scheme

The First Grant Scheme has now closed for applicants.

The First Grants Scheme is supporting academic researchers to develop projects which contribute to knowledge and understanding of the screen industries in Yorkshire and the Humber. Researchers who are based at higher education institutions in the UK are invited to apply for funding of up to £10,000 in order to support their research.

The scheme will only support researchers who have not been a principal investigator or co-investigator already on a grant worth more than £5,000.

This scheme was developed with the help of the Early Career Research Network.

Research focus

The scheme will fund projects of relevance to the Yorkshire and the Humber screen industries. This could include researchers undertaking work:

  • about, with or for the screen industries of Yorkshire and the Humber (eg through co-design or co-production)
  • addressing challenges facing the Yorkshire and the Humber screen industries
  • generating knowledge of use to the Yorkshire and the Humber screen industries

Proposed projects should also address at least one of SIGN’s key challenge areas:

  • Current skills and talent shortages
  • Barriers to entry and lack of diversity
  • Anticipating future skills and talent needs
  • Preparing for new digital storytelling
  • Understanding future audiences and users
  • Routes to market for new products
  • Underdeveloped business and leadership skills
  • Sector resilience and agility post-Covid
  • Virtual production

For more information, or to discuss areas of focus, please email [email protected]uk

Equality, diversity and inclusion

Proposals should evidence a strong commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in line with XR Stories and SIGN’s diversity and inclusion policy.

Research design (including sampling) and implementation should be undertaken in ways that uphold progressive approaches to EDI.

We will award at least two grants to applicants from groups underrepresented in the higher education sector. This includes people with disabilities, people from diverse ethnic backgrounds, those from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds, or people who are LGBTQ+.

Next steps

The deadline to apply is Monday 15 November 2021 at midday.


Call launch – 20 September 2021
Deadline for proposals – 15 November 2021 at midday
Award decisions – by end of November 2021
Project start dates – between 31 January 2022 – 31 March 2022
Post-project report/evaluation – six weeks after the project end

For more information, please email [email protected]

This project is part of:

  • Research

    Investigating the challenges facing the screen industries and devising evidence-based interventions