The Paton Prize Bursary

Dig into history and the world of the scientists that shaped major ideas in modern physiology. The bursary is an opportunity for you to delve into unpublished documents and fascinating events!

Who can apply?

Undergraduate and postgraduate students wishing to conduct historical research as part of their dissertation project or thesis

How much funding is available?

Up to £200 a week over any four to six week period to cover living and research costs

When can I apply?

There is no deadline: applications can be made at anytime

How do I apply?

Submit CV and cover letter to

What is involved?

As a starting point awardees will use The Physiological Society archive housed in the Wellcome Library, London, to conduct a piece of historical research on an agreed project.

Projects will mainly consist of independent study, following an induction on how to use, handle and understand archival material.

You will gain practical experience in carrying out historical research with primary resource materials.

We encourage original project proposals but these suggestions should get you started! Feel free to write to if you want to discuss any initial ideas.

  • Take a closer look at The Society’s Honorary Members – Explore early Honorary Members of The Society: who they were, what they did and why they were offered Honorary membership.
  • Past Officers of The Society – A number of notable physiologists have guided The Society’s direction as Past Officers. Awardees may want to take a closer look at some of these people and what their roles were within The Society.
  • The Physiological Society and your institution: How has the Society interacted with your institute in the past? What is the history of The Society within your department?

The fund originated with a donation from Professor Sir William Paton with a matching contribution from the Society.

He was an English physiologist, pharmacologist and Fellow of the Royal Society, considered by many to be one of the world’s greatest pharmacologists. He was responsible for discovering two new classes of drugs, one of which was the first drug that specifically and safely lowered blood pressure

Paton not only made countless discoveries but was also heavily involved in numerous public committees and had a special interest in the history of medicine.

In addition to the bursary, we also award the Paton Prize Lecture.

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