Conference Support.

Income from sales of the Philosophical Quarterly enables the SPA to offer grants to support philosophy events organised in Scotland, including conferences and workshops, reading parties, and public lectures (lectures for primarily non-academic audiences). We offer grants:

  • of up to £1,000 for one-day events
  • of up to £1,500 for all other events.

However, in exceptional cases, and only when the need and justification for such additional funding is clear, the SPA can provide grants of up to £2,500.

The SPA normally will not support individual talks to academic audiences (i.e., academic research events that are not plausibly “workshops” or “conferences”); however, in exceptional circumstances, and only when the need and justification for such funding is clear, the SPA may support such talks.

Some guidelines for applications:

  • Application budgets are normally expected to show other sources of income (e.g. support from the department hosting the event).
  • SPA conference grants normally take the form of a guarantee against losses.
  • SPA conference grants are normally made for events being held in Scotland.
  • Events to be supported by the SPA are normally open to all SPA members and to all philosophy students in Scotland.
  • The SPA expects that applicants will have given proper consideration to gender balance amongst the participants (speakers, commentators, chairs) in the planning of events. The SPA also expects that applicants give consideration to accessibility in the planning of their events, and asks applicants to note reasonable efforts made in this regard.  (See suggested guidelines here.)
  • Up to an additional £500 (guarantee against losses) is available for conference organizers to make free child care available to conference participants and delegates.

Applications should include (in this order):

  1. A description of the event (1-2 pages),  including a brief explanation in their application if their proposed event is an exception to the norms and expectations described above.
  2. A proposed budget (1-2 pages), showing expenditure and other sources of income. This should include a breakdown of costs.  In the case of lunches/dinners and refreshments, it should include the number of persons covered by the expense (so we can see cost per person), and a description of who is to be covered (conference organizers, speakers, other attendees?).  Note: In cases of requests involving expenses for non-speakers, the SPA typically sets a higher bar for funding, and expects that organizers will have given special consideration to cost-effectiveness, and whether the expenses are necessary for the success of the given event.

Decisions about conference grants are made by the SPA Committee.  Applications can be made at any time, and should be sent to the Secretary at  Because funding is limited each academic year, it makes sense to apply as early as possible.

Supported conferences should acknowledge the financial support of the SPA on all the publicity announcing the event. SPA logos can be downloaded here: round-black, round-white-1round-white-2, round-invert, horizontal-black, horizontal-white.