Fran Trust


The Fran Trust was established in 2012 by Dr. Roona Simpson. Roona was, until 2015, a lecturer in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Glasgow and a committed, engaging teacher of research methods, feminist theory and practice and the sociology of family and relationships. She was herself a graduate of the University of Glasgow, having been awarded a first class honours degree in sociology and philosophy in 1997. She went on to complete a PhD at the London School of Economics’ Gender Institute in 2005 and following that worked as a researcher in London and in Edinburgh at the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships, where she remained an active associate. Outside her work Roona was a committed supporter of gender equality through her involvement with Engender and more recently, the Glasgow Women’s Library.

Roona didn’t have any financial barriers to education but knew how lucky she was in this respect and she generously set up the Fran Trust to help support the next generation of scholars. Sadly Roona passed away in 2017, aged just 53, after a short illness. She is greatly missed by all of us who had the pleasure of knowing her.

The Fran Trust funds scholarly activity in the fields of feminism, gender or women's studies.  The Trust provides small grants of up to £500 for postgraduate students studying at UK universities to attend and present papers on a gender-related topic at academic conferences.  Applicants can apply twice in the same academic year, but will only be eligible for two awards during their total period of study.

Due to the high number of applications, the fund has now closed


The principal objectives of the Trust are:

  • supporting the academic careers of postgraduate students
  • advancing education by providing financial assistance to those involved in feminist scholarship

Making A Difference

View a list of the conference attended by awardees in 2013,  2014,  2015 and 2016

Feedback from successful applicants:

"The conference exposed me to a wide range of highly renowned authors and theorists in the academic field of gender and work. I met numerous authors whose work I have been reading and using since my undergraduate years."

"I would like to say a huge thank you to the Fran Trust for funding my attendance at this conference. It has led to two international connections for my future work, one in Australia and one in Sweden, which would not have been possible without my attending this conference."

"I simply can't express the benefit of spending two whole days immersed in the eighteenth century and engaging with people who are working on similar topics to me. It is inspiring, energising and thrilling!"

"As a result of my conference paper presentation, I received three offers of publication in peer reviewed academic journals."


Poster presentations will not be accepted.

How to Apply

Due to the high volume of applications the fund is now closed.

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