The Irish Legal History Postdoctoral Bursary

The Irish Legal History Postdoctoral Bursary has been established to subvent the travelling expenses of postdoctoral researchers undertaking research into any aspect to Irish legal history.

There is a fund of up to €1,000 available annually. Applications should be made by the end of June.


    • Applicants for the Bursary should hold a PhD in law, history or a related discipline.
    • The Bursary is restricted to members of the Irish Legal History Society. Details and membership forms are available at: Become a Member
    • The award may be made to any postdoctoral researcher or academic undertaking research into any aspect of Irish legal history.
    • ‘Legal history’ includes the development or history of legal rules, legal institutions, legal procedures or the legal profession; biographical sketches of legal personalities; the development of legal theories or ideas; comparative legal history.


  • The purpose of the Bursary is to support travel for the purpose of carrying out research into Irish legal history. This includes travel to Ireland, travel within Ireland and travel abroad. Funding will not be awarded for travel to national or international conferences, or similar events
  • Funds awarded for a specific purpose should not be spent in other ways without the Society’s express permission.
  • The award of the bursary will be determined by a Sub-Committee of the Society and ratified by the Council.
  • The Committee may decide to award a lesser amount than that sought, or may divide the fund between several applicants, as it deems appropriate.
  • There is no minimum amount which may be sought; the maximum is €1,000.
  • The Society reserves the right to make no award in a given year.
  • Applicants will need to demonstrate that the funded research will lead to dissemination (such as publication or conference presentation)
  • Applicants must include details of one academic referee in their application.
  • Awardees undertake to acknowledge the Society in any disseminations (such as publications or presentations) arising from the funded research.
  • Awardees will be expected to furnish the Society with a short report within one year of the award, describing the research undertaken and how the bursary facilitated this work.
  • Irish Legal History Society Council members are not eligible to apply for this fund.

The Application process

    • Applicants should complete the Application form (see below) and send it by email to Dr. Niamh Howlin ( before the closing date.
    • After the expiry of the closing date, a Sub-Committee of the Society’s Council known as the Bursary Committee will consider all applications.
    • The Sub-Committee will make recommendations for the award of bursaries, and these will be ratified by the Society’s Council.
    • Once a final decision has been made, all applicants (whether successful or unsuccessful) will be contacted by email by the Bursary Committee. This should be no more than 6 weeks after the expiry of the closing date.
    • Successful applicants will be asked to confirm their acceptance of the bursary, and the bursary will be paid by cheque.
    • For accounting purposes, awardees must confirm (by email) receipt of the cheque.
    • Within one year of the award, awardees are required to provide a short report (less than 1,000 words) to the Bursary Committee, outlining how the funds have been used, and how the research will be disseminated. This should be emailed to one of the Joint Secretaries.

What types of application will be successful?

    • Applicants need to satisfy the Bursary Committee that their work is likely to constitute an original scholarly contribution to the knowledge and understanding of Irish legal history, as defined in 1.3 (above)
    • Applicants should required to show that the completion of their research requires the consultation of source material which is not otherwise available locally; that is, in or near the place in which they normally reside.
    • Applicants are advised to be as specific as possible in their costings; funding awarded by the Society should represent value for money.
    • Applicants should ensure that their application falls within the eligibility criteria set out in 1 (above)
    • Applicants should outline any other sources of funding of which they are in receipt.
    • Applicants should indicate how they plan to disseminate the research. 


The application form may be downloaded HERE

Further details may be obtained from Dr. Niamh Howlin, UCD Sutherland School of Law: